Like many moms in Toronto, Gwen Harvey brought her children to the ROM to see the dinosaurs and experience the bat cave. But she also brought them to the Museum so they could learn about different cultures from a young age. “I wanted my children to have an understanding and appreciation for other people’s cultural traditions and backgrounds, and to open their eyes to a larger world outside of Toronto,” she says.
As a teenager, Gwen started a multi-cultural week at her high school. She grew up in England and has travelled extensively with her family but feels lucky to be Canadian. “There’s an incredible wealth of cultures represented here,” Gwen says. “The ROM increases our understanding and appreciation of cultural diversity, while celebrating and preserving our heritage for future generations. It’s also a place that inspires dialogue and creates a sense of belonging to a community.”
Gwen has been a long-time friend and supporter of the ROM. She began volunteering on the Planned Giving Advisory Board at the invitation of Robert Pierce, who later became Chairman of the ROM Board of Governors. Gwen was a valued member of the Donor Events Committee and the Renaissance ROM Campaign Cabinet. She has previously chaired the Currelly Society and has acted as a ROM Governor for more than a decade.
As a member of the Currelly Society, Gwen is part of a group who have promised future gifts to the Museum. Drawing on her knowledge of financial planning as the President of BridgeWater Family Wealth Services, Gwen chose to support the ROM through a gift of life insurance. “The ROM is funded by the government,” she says. “But it would be a fraction of what it is without additional support from individual donors, patrons and corporations.”