For the first time in 27 years, we weren’t able to come together on Jeans for Genes Day, but the Australian community still came together and united behind the 1 in 20 children living with birth defects and genetic diseases – raising a spectacular $500,000 in 48 hours!
Due to the pandemic, volunteers did not fundraise in public places in most parts of Australia. But that certainly didn’t stop our supporters fundraising in their own socially-distanced style. Childcare centres painted jeans, schools held fashion parades, mums baked cakes for their neighbours, businesses went blue, and a lot of people wore a lot of denim!
When the Jeans for Genes community heard that we couldn’t be out selling merchandise and collecting donations – they all headed online. At last count, the donations were still rolling in and the tally for the campaign had gone over $850,000.
Children’s Medical Research Institute’s Director Professor Roger Reddel said he was overwhelmed by the support for our scientists.
“Fundraising during the pandemic has been tough for all charities,’’ Professor Reddel said.
“We know how difficult it is for many Australians who are living with uncertainty about their family’s health and financial future. We did not expect to be so overwhelmed with support from the community and we are very grateful.’’
Professor Reddel said it was fantastic for the researchers, who normally volunteer to fundraise on railway stations and streets on Jeans for Genes Day, to see that the community remains firmly behind them.
“We would like to thank every single person who donned their denim and showed their support through advocacy or fundraising.
“I would like to personally acknowledge the parents of children living with genetic disease who go above and beyond for their families every day. Not only do they fight for their children’s lives, they also work very hard to educate the public about the importance of investing in research. They also pitch in to fundraise for our scientists – who in turn are fighting for their kids.
“Once again the Jeans for Genes family has shown its rock-solid loyalty to the scientists and the vital work being done in the labs at Children’s Medical Research Institute.’’