NeuRA Profile 2014 - page 9

NeuRAProfile 2014
NeuRA is fortunate tohaveMargareteAinsworthas a friend.
Her gift is a template for ‘privatephilanthropy’ –philanthropy
that ispersonal, antibureaucraticand inspirational.
Even though resourcesof thepublicand for-profit sectors
dwarf thoseof thephilanthropic sector, privatephilanthropy
still hasonecrucial advantage. Privatedonorsdonot answer
tovotersor shareholders, and theyarenot constrainedby the
peer-reviewprotocols that dominateour government funding.
Theyare free tofind their ownniche.
Another powerful contribution that philanthropistsmake
tomedical research is in raisingawareness.MrsAinsworth’s
gift providedaconduit toexposureacrossmanyaudiences,
increasing theprofileof our research.
MrsAinsworth’s philanthropicphilosophy is simple:
give towhat you really feel passionate about. “I find it
very rewarding,” she says.
The rewardsobviouslyflowbothways as this substantial
gift allowedNeuRA to continue thefitout of thenew
building. NeuRA’s scientists arenowworkingwithin
themost innovativemedical and clinical research
environment, allowing them topush the frontiersof
their scientificendeavours.
Thisspecial gift reflects thepowerofphilanthropy to transform
researchcapacity, speedup thecontinual search formore
breakthroughs thatwill benefit patients inAustraliaand
globally, and further endorsesNeuRA’spositionas a leading
centreof excellence in theneurosciences.
One suchpartnership, developed throughanexchange
of ideaswithNeuRA’sChairman, Paul Brassil, andExecutive
Director, Prof Peter Schofield, resulted inbusinesswoman,
MargareteAinsworth,makingoneof the largest singlegifts
givenbya femalephilanthropist inAustralianhistory.
Her exceptionallygenerousdonationof $10million
represents amilestone forNeuRA. TheNeuRABoard
offered to recognise thisgift bynaming thenewbuilding
MrsAinsworthacceptedour proposal tomakeher gift public.
Inexchange for her generosity,MrsAinsworthwill see the
resultsof her philanthropydevelop into tangible research
opportunities. Life-saving researchwill happenas a result
of her gift, and significant newdiscoverieswill bemade.
A long-time supporter ofmental health research, she says
she ismotivatedby two simple factors: “Adesperateneed
for research, andaconfidence inNeuRA.”
“I havealways felt for those families livingwithmental
illness,”MrsAinsworth says. “Compassion for peoplewho
havenot beenas luckyas I havebeenhasgivenme the
inspiration togive.”
NeuRA’s scientists arenowworking
within themost innovativemedical
and clinical researchenvironment,
allowing them topush the frontiers
of their science.
Leveraging support andconveninghigh-level
partnerships forNeuRA’s research initiatives
createanenvironment thatwill deliver the
greatest impact on themost urgentmedical
researchchallengeswe face today.
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