Cancer Research UK announced today, Thursday 4 August , that it has raised a monumental £100 million towards the overall £650 million cost to build the Francis Crick Institute, a pioneering medical research facility in the heart of London.
The announcement comes as the new building in King’s Cross St Pancras is nearing completion and scientists are set to move in soon.
After launching its Create The Change campaign in 2011 and announcing plans to raise the ambitious figure, Cancer Research UK met its target in July 2016, making it the charity’s most successful high-value fundraising campaign.
The £100 million raised was one of the largest philanthropic charitable campaigns ever in the UK. It was led by a volunteer development board chaired by Charles Manby.
A transformative US$25m donation was also made by HSBC, Cancer Research UK’s largest ever gift.
Although most of the money was raised through major gifts, the general public was also encouraged to support through a fully integrated fundraising campaign which asked them to ‘Be Part of the Crick’s DNA’. This included channels such as digital, outdoor, social media, press and PR, face-to-face and direct mail.
More than £3 million was raised by the charity’s 2015 London Marathon runners and a quarter of a million pounds from an auction of unique DNA-inspired sculptures created by world renowned artists and designers, including Ai Weiwei and the late Zaha Hadid.
The fundraising campaign has taken Cancer Research UK’s overall commitment to building the Crick to £160 million, with the extra £60m arising from the sale of their existing research laboratories in London. Cancer Research UK is the only partner who has raised funds for the Crick through philanthropic means.
Sir Harpal Kumar, Cancer Research UK Chief Executive, said: “Cancer Research UK is proud to announce that the Create The Change campaign has reached its incredible £100 million fundraising target towards the Francis Crick Institute.
“It’s thanks to the generosity of more than 200 individual donors that we’ve been able to reach this ambitious sum in just four years.
“Through collaboration and sharing insights across many different disease areas, the Crick will make a unique global contribution to our understanding of their causes and drivers.
“This cross pollination of knowledge, delivered through state of the art facilities and the best scientific minds, will accelerate and deepen our understanding of how cancer starts, spreads and develops, ultimately improving the lives of patients across the world.”
Charles Manby, chair of the Create The Change Development Board, said: “As chairman and donor to Create the Change I’m incredibly proud of what we have achieved. The Francis Crick Institute has the potential to change the face of medical research forever by attracting the very best scientists from around the world and it has been an honour to be part of such a significant campaign.
“I would like to thank everyone who has supported Create the Change for their vision and generosity.”
When it opens later this year, the Crick will see more than 1,200 scientists coming together under one roof to tackle the major diseases, such as cancer, that pose the greatest threat to humanity.
About The Francis Crick Institute
The Francis Crick Institute is a world-leading centre of biomedical research and innovation. It will house 1,200 leading scientists from a variety of disciplines working together under one roof to tackle the biggest health challenges faced by humankind. Dedicated to research excellence, the institute will have the scale, vision and expertise to tackle challenging scientific questions underpinning health and disease.
The Francis Crick Institute is a visionary collaboration between six of the world’s leading medical research organisations: Cancer Research UK, the Medical Research Council, the Wellcome Trust, UCL (University College London), King’s College London and Imperial College London. It will be world-class with a strong national role – training scientists and developing ideas for public good. www.crick.ac.uk.