A unique piece of artwork, 60 years in the making, was unveiled outside Children’s Medical Research Institute today (Friday) which will act as a Honour Roll Wall to thank the generous donors who make the most vital scientific work possible.
Director Professor Roger Reddel said, as CMRI approaches its 60th birthday in 2018, it was only appropriate that a tribute to our donors was erected.
"That's how long we have been enjoying the amazingly generous and loyal support of the community. The wonderful individuals and Foundations that we are honouring today are vital contributors to the improvements in children's health that CMRI's research has made, and will continue to make."
The design includes 10 brightly rainbow-coloured helix-shaped structures which resemble a DNA strand, mounted on a concrete wall. Each helix includes gold, silver and bronze plaques with the names of 79 generous donors and space for more to come.
An official ceremony was attended by more than 100 people outside the Westmead building. There were also tours of the incredible facilities including the ProCan laboratories.
Some of those honoured included the late James Fairfax AC, who has supported CMRI throughout its entire history, and Mr Len Ainsworth who, as a much more recent supporter, was a major contributor to the new wing of the building where the Honour Roll Wall is located.
CMRI Board President Professor Frank Martin said the children of Australia thanked the donors.
“We have a wonderful building, new laboratories and the brightest researches with the greatest reputations around the world. Our donors are critical to enable that research to happen. The children of Australia will continue to get the benefit of what you have done.’’
An interesting element to the design is the incorporation of feng shui principles. The Honour Roll Wall is on the south of the building which represents fire energy and is a good direction for a strong reputation. The colours of red, orange, gold, blue and green represent the five elements and move in a productive cycle. The upward movement of the strands of DNA represent upward growth.
The contributions from our donors assist CMRI researchers in making enormous advances in the treatment and prevention of childhood diseases through their work in areas such as cancer, neurobiology, embryology and gene therapy.
Stage two of the Honour Roll Wall project will see a new series of plaques established inside the building in the future.