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Progress Updates

RSF Social Finance Makes a Loan to Pine Hill Waldorf School

Oct 5th 2012
PRESS RELEASE from Rudolf Steiner Foundation
Wednesday, October 3, 2012 - 12:30pm

(3BL Media) San Francisco, CA - October 3, 2012 - RSF Social Finance is pleased to announce a new loan to Pine Hill Waldorf School. Pine Hill is one of RSF’s oldest borrowers. RSF made one of its first loans to Pine Hill Waldorf School in 1984, helping the influential elementary school recover from a fire that destroyed its schoolhouse. The two have remained partners in a variety of ways, and RSF is now providing funding for a model early childhood education center that extends the school’s impact into the community and beyond.

Pine Hill is a Nursery through 8th grade, independent Waldorf School in Wilton, New Hampshire – approximately 1.5 hours from Boston.  The school is located directly across the street from High Mowing School, a Waldorf boarding school for high school students.  Wilton is also the home of The Center for Anthroposophy, RSF borrower Four Winds Community, and the Temple Wilton Community Biodynamic Farm.

Pine Hill started in 1972 with nineteen students. Today the school has 158 students and its 47 acre campus includes a main building with a 337 seat auditorium, a manual arts building, and an early childhood building. RSF’s loan will support the construction of the Children’s Village, an early childhood education center.

“We are really excited about the Children’s Village,” says Sherry Jennings, a long-time Pine Hill teacher. “This will be a space where we can protect and honor the needs of the very young child. We’re also creating a publicly accessible parent education program, which will contribute to the whole community.”

“Without RSF we would not have been able to develop as full a master plan and model,” says Arthur Auer, director of the Waldorf teacher training program at Pine Hill. “The impact is not just local: the Children’s Village speaks to other Waldorf schools about the value of establishing their own early childhood education centers.”

“So many of RSF’s early cutting edge loan programs were developed in conjunction with the first Pine Hill Waldorf School loan and it’s exciting to be able to help Pine Hill again, 28 years later,” says RSF’s Chair of the Board, Mark A. Finser.

About RSF Social Finance

Located in San Francisco, CA, RSF Social Finance (RSF) is a financial services organization dedicated to transforming the way the world works with money. Since 1984, the organization has made over $275 million in loans and $100 million in grants to non-profit and for-profit social enterprises working in the areas of Food & Agriculture, Education & the Arts, and Ecological Stewardship.

RSF's lending capital comes primarily from 1,200 individuals who have invested $1,000 or more in the organization's Social Investment Fund. Investors earn a competitive return on their money comparable to a certificate of deposit while their funds are deployed to leading social enterprises. To learn more,

About Pine Hill

Pine Hill Waldorf School is an independent private primary school offering a curriculum based on the educational methods of Austrian philosopher Rudolf Steiner, the founder of Waldorf education.  Waldorf education is the fastest- growing independent educational movement in the world, and Pine Hill Waldorf School is one of the oldest and most established of the several hundred Waldorf schools in North America.  Pine Hill is accredited by the Association of Independent Schools in New England (AISNE) and the Association of Waldorf Schools of North America (AWSNA.)  The school offers need-based tuition assistance to many of its students.  Inquiries and visitors are very welcome.  For more information, please contact the school at 603-654-6003 or visit

Ted Levinson, Lending Director 415.561.6179

Jillian McCoy, Senior Associate, Communications 415.561.6156


First Timber Frame Structure Complete!

May 25th 2012

Blessing adapted by Walt Zuber for Pine Hill Waldorf School’s Children’s Village

May this building be founded

On the goodness of the earth

May the walls of this building be blessed

By the four winds of heaven.

May the roof of this building be guarded

By the heights and the stars above.

So that all who dwell in this building,

All who seek shelter in this building,

All who strive, protected by this building,

Find hope and strength to live,

Find love and joy to give,

Find faith and meaning in their destiny.

Recently Walt Zuber commemorated the completion of our first new building’s timber frame structure through a traditional whetting bush and a blessing. Thank you, Walt for your months of dedicated work, given freely with careful intention and love. Your gift inspires our community. The spirit in which you brought it forges a new beginning for Pine Hill.

On completion of the timber frame, a whetting bush (evergreen bough) is nailed to the highest point of the frame. There are many different explanations for this tradition, and I will share with you mine. This whetting bush was placed on the ridge of this building to remind me of the trees in the forest which grew strong and sturdy under the sun, moon, and stars.  These trees were harvested for timbers and cut into posts and beams to stand strong and sturdy, to provide a shelter and sanctuary for those who will dwell beneath them.  It also is a thanksgiving for the workers.  As one stands back and views this symbol of how nature provides for us, we feel a sense of accomplishment, reverence and thanks. 

~Walt Zuber, Pine Hill parent and Clerk of the Works for the new buildings

The Children's Village building project needs you!

May 7th 2012

We are beginning to develop a "Call Group" of willing friends and supporters of Pine Hill to contribute "hands-on" labor for the construction of our new buildings. This could include anything from skilled, expert carpentry to people willing to clean up the job site, and everything in between. Thank you in advance.

Please e-mail with your name, the best way to contact you, and a list of the skills you are willing to offer. 

~Walt Zuber, Clerk of the Works

Photos of the building site

May 6th 2012

Visit us soon for the first update about what we've been up to! Meanwhile, take a look at some pictures of the construction site.