In particular, one woman’s generosity has had a significant impact on medical research conducted within the Northern Sydney community, an impact that we continue to benefit from today.
In 1929, Mrs Eva Kolling OBE made a gift of £5,000 (which equates to over £328,972 in 2020) in memory of her late husband – Charles Kolling. This generous donation was used to fund the construction of one of the first medical research laboratories in New South Wales – the Charles Kolling Memorial Laboratory.
Upon her death in 1941, Eva generously left a legacy gift in her will to continue to support the development of the medical research facility which led to its expansion. What started as a single laboratory has since expanded into a fully-fledged medical research institute – The Kolling Institute of Medical Research.
As a joint partnership between The University of Sydney and the Northern Sydney Local Health District, the Kolling Institute of Medical Research is focused on answering some of the greatest health and medical challenges facing our world today. This year, the Institute will be celebrating its 100th anniversary this year and is considered to be the oldest medical research institute in New South Wales.
It took incredible foresight, generosity, and passion for Eva Kolling to make the philanthropic investment that she did (especially during a time when such charity was unheard of). As a community, we should be grateful for this act of philanthropic leadership as without her gift the Kolling Institute of Medical Research may not have ever existed and been able to touch the millions of lives that it does today.
Eva Kolling’s gift and bequest laid the foundation for medical research for generations to come.