I’m a Scientist is proud to be part-funded through a Society Award from the Wellcome, the UK’s largest charity. Wellcome are dedicated to achieving extraordinary improvements in human and animal health. They support the brightest minds in biomedical research and the medical humanities. Wellcome’s public engagement grants are intended to promote interest, excitement and debate around science and society.
The Wellcome is providing £225,000 over three years to support the event. We need to raise the same again from other funders in order to keep the event going.
Wellcome support in Kenya Kenya is one of Africa’s most dynamic countries; the East African nation boasts a population that has swelled to over 39 million. This rise has been accompanied by increasing health challenges, which the country’s researchers are meeting, with a drive to succeed on local, regional and global fronts.
The KEMRI-Wellcome Research Programme is well known internationally for its work tackling malaria and other infectious diseases, particularly bacterial and viral childhood infections. With links to the Wellcome since the 1940s, the Programme was formally established in 1989, in partnership with the Kenya Medical Research Institute (KEMRI). It conducts basic and clinical research in parallel, with results feeding directly into local and international health policy, and aims to expand the country’s capacity to conduct multidisciplinary research that is strong, sustainable and internationally competitive.
Strong community links are at the heart of the Programme, with an emphasis on capacity building and training to build scientific leadership and create a critical mass of support from trained research and non-research staff. The Programme employs over 600 people, 95 per cent of whom are Kenyan. Of the 100 scientists in the Programme, 75 are East African. A £9 million Strategic Award from the Wellcome is helping to train local researchers in areas such as translational research, social science and clinical trials.