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2008 scholarship winners announced

August 2008 Event

The Anika Foundation has just completed its Annual report for the year ending June 2008.

The progress this year has been enormous, and support from the public for issues related to adolescent depression and suicide continues to grow. The Report announces the second year of our NSW teacher’s scholarships—another three $10,000 travelling scholarships—following the success of our 2007 scholars. These scholarships, known as ‘The Premier’s Anika Foundation Scholarships in Youth Depression Awareness’, focus on the identification issues: who is at risk? How can they be identified and helped into a program of support and (where needed) medical treatment? We focus on schools because they are in the front line of adolescent depression, and because the student-to-student and student-to-teacher interactions are often a richer source of information than occurs in the home. This is because secrecy and fear are factors that impede identification. The 2008 Annual Report also foreshadows our first scholarship on the treatment side, which is due solely to the generosity of the Macquarie Group Foundation. It is to be called:

‘The Macquarie Group Foundation Scholarship in Adolescent Depression and Suicide’.

We are pushing ahead with this new scholarship in partnership with Macquarie in order to speed progress on research into adolescent depression, rather than wait until our endowment fund could fully fund such an additional scholarship. We are though, on a determined course to fund the scholarship for sustainability for the long term. Currently the fund is approximately $850,000. We need to build it to $1.6 million over the next 3 years to achieve this goal. If this can be accomplished even sooner, then of course we can begin to further expand the program to include: more scholarships for research; better follow up activity; and extending the program to states other than NSW.

The Foundation just held its 3rd annual fund raiser where Glenn Stevens, Governor of the Reserve Bank of Australia and member of the Anika Foundation board, spoke to financial market participants to raise money for the endowment fund. This year Danae Wignall also spoke to the group of financial experts before Glenn delivered his address. She spoke on the work of the Foundation, and received an enthusiastic reception from people in a market group that usually has the reputation of being quite hard-nosed. The support and generosity from the group was palpable. Glenn’s topic this year was “Challenges for Economic Policy”, which turned out to be one of the most influential and best-quoted speeches by an Australian policy maker for some time.

We strongly encourage donors to support the Foundation. The adolescent depression issue affects 1 in 4 families; and so you undoubtedly know someone who is at risk. Even if depression in an adolescent does not lead to suicide, it is often the start of a lifetime struggle with depression. By focusing on adolescents we hope both to save lives as well as to get young people into good habits early enough in their lives to reduce suffering later on. If companies would like to become involved as partners with the Anika Foundation, as with Macquarie, or if you would like simply to make a donation, please see the details for contacting us on this website.

Your support is greatly appreciated.

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