A WA children’s cancer research group will direct $1 million a year to the Telethon Kids Institute, in a new funding agreement to ramp up groundbreaking research.
For more than 30 years the Perth-based Children’s Leukaemia and Cancer Research Foundation has been raising money for research into childhood cancers.
Board chairman Geoff Cattach said the three year agreement with Telethon made sense and would help raise the profile of all the research.
The foundation was founded by Peter Harper, whose daughter Jennifer was diagnosed with leukaemia in 1977. When he discovered there was no research into children’s leukaemia being conducted in WA, he set out to raise money. Sadly, Jennifer died in 1978.
The foundation was established at Princess Margaret Hospital, and in 1984 Swiss-born scientist Dr Ursula Kees was recruited from the German Cancer Institute to head up its research laboratory.
Mr Cattach said the new collaboration was designed to get maximum benefit from donations from the community to help sick children.
“I think it will be good for the foundation’s profile but we’ve also got a pretty solid base in terms of the people who contribute to us,” he said.
“I often refer to them as ordinary Australians, but of course they’re not ordinary at all.”