Like most research institutes, the majority of SAHMRI’s work is funded through competitive grants from bodies such as the National Health and Medical Research Council and the Medical Research Future Fund. However, SAHMRI Executive Director, Professor Steve Wesselingh, says it’s the flexibility of donations by individuals, groups and organisations that truly allows the institute’s researchers to shine.
“Significant time and effort goes into securing competitive grant funding and the conditions for the usage of that public money are, quite rightly, stringent,” Professor Wesselingh said.
“Funding that comes from philanthropy allows our researchers to be dynamic in the projects they pursue and flexible to change course during that project, if that’s what the evidence dictates.”
Professor Wesselingh cites the example of the Detmold Family, who are both a Founding Partner and a Leader in Philanthropy.
“The team at the Detmold Group, through Rodney, have both a passionate interest in our work and concern for the people living with the diseases we’re working to eradicate. We would never simply use the word ‘donors’ to describe such people because the relationships we share with our supporters are so much deeper than that,” Professor Wesselingh explained.