The Society of Friends of St. Ann’s Academy was formed during the redevelopment and restoration of St. Ann’s Academy led by the British Columbia Buildings Corporation in 1995. A small group of St. Ann’s Academy Alumnae met in July 1996 to discuss a general reunion and in the fall, others joined together for presentations and informative talks, the result of which demonstrated the need for involvement in the proposed restoration of St. Ann’s Academy Interpretive Centre, Chapel and grounds. A series of gatherings occurred in the homes of keen individuals. Enthusiasm grew, and at a membership meeting held in February 1997, 50 people began the sign-up of what was eventually to total over 300 members. Members, participants and supporters became known as the “Friends.”
A membership fee was established and in May 1997, and office space, computer and telephone were provided for the Society in the Provincial Capital Commission building on Pandora Ave. Shortly thereafter office space was provided on-site. An effective working relationship then developed with the Provincial Capital Commission Academy Site Advisory Board, stewards of the site. Updates on the restoration of St. Ann’s were provided during a meeting of June 1997 and graduate research students invited participants to submit stories about the Academy for the Interpretive Centre. On July 12, 1997, members provided their assistance for the official re-opening ceremonies on the grounds of St. Ann’s Academy.
At the first Annual General Meeting held on September 20, 1998, an executive was elected for the Society of Friends. Registered Charitable Status was received on October 1, 1998.
Today the current executive and members of the Society carry out ongoing work in support of the Academy and grounds, undertaking gender justice, educational projects while melding the values of the past to the present.