MONTREAL, March 20, 2019 /CNW Telbec/ - The Brain Canada Foundation (Brain Canada) welcomes the Government of Canada's decision to renew its partnership with Brain Canada, as announced in the federal budget. Finance Minister Bill Morneau's budget committed $40 million in new investments over two years in brain research, through the Canada Brain Research Fund.
"We are pleased that the Government of Canada has continued its support of world-class brain research through Brain Canada," said Inez Jabalpurwala, President and CEO, Brain Canada. "The funds committed in the budget will support Canada's leadership position in brain research globally, and accelerate discoveries aimed at improving the lives of all Canadians."
The Canada Brain Research Fund is an innovative partnership between the Government of Canada (through Health Canada) and Brain Canada, designed to encourage Canadians to increase their support of brain research, and maximize the impact and efficiency of those investments. The Fund supports the very best Canadian brain research, fostering collaboration across disorders, fields, disciplines, institutions, and provinces, and enhancing global linkages.
"Researchers who are exploring the brain are our modern-day pioneers, working to conquer the final frontier of science," says Naomi Azrieli, Chair and CEO of the Azrieli Foundation and Chair of Brain Canada. "By strategically leveraging government funding with private donor and partner support, Brain Canada's model has been a powerful catalyst towards great research, providing funds that would otherwise not be available to Canadian scientists."
Since the Canada Brain Research Fund's inception, Brain Canada has raised $115 million from private donors and non-federal partners—now numbering more than 100—which has been matched by Health Canada on a 1:1 basis, with an additional $5 million for program and operating expenses. To date, the Fund has awarded $220 million to support 255 projects across Canada involving more than 1,000 researchers at 115 institutions.
This commitment by the federal government is an important step to ensure that Canada continues to be among the leaders in the global challenge to understand brain function and brain diseases. More than simply contributing public money to this vital cause, the matching nature of the fund is stimulating and rallying private donations and other non-governmental funders to support transformative brain research on a scale never before achieved in Canada.
As Brain Canada celebrates its 20th anniversary in 2019, this renewed partnership with the Government of Canada enables all Canadians to look to the future in anticipation of what we will discover.
"This is positive news for the brain research community and for the health of all Canadians. The added investment will allow us to expand our work with a range of valued partners, together with Government," said Franco J. Vaccarino, Chair of the Research Policy Committee of the Brain Canada Board. "As we build the next phase of programs, we will continue to establish our priorities through the contributions of an ecosystem of stakeholders, including researchers from different disciplines (in Canada and internationally), research institutes across the country, and the health charities that have direct outreach with patients, families and caregivers. We look forward to continuing our collaborative relationship with everyone committed to the 'One System' approach to brain research."
About Brain Canada
Brain Canada is a national registered charity that enables and supports excellent, innovative, paradigm-changing brain research in Canada. Brain Canada's vision is to understand the brain, in health and illness, to improve lives and achieve societal impact. For two decades, Brain Canada has made the case for the brain as a single, complex system with commonalities across the range of neurological disorders, mental illnesses and addictions, brain and spinal cord injuries. Looking at the brain as one system has underscored the need for increased collaboration across disciplines and institutions, and a smarter way to invest in brain research that is focused on outcomes that will benefit patients and families.
Brain Canada raises and leverages funds from a range of donors and partners, including individuals, corporations, foundations, research institutes, health charities, and provincial agencies. To date, Brain Canada and its supporters have invested $250 million in 300 research projects across the country.