The Difference you make

Whether you take part in an existing challenge, create your own activity or mark an occasion, there are many ways to help us raise essential funds.

The Bionics Institute greatly appreciates the incredible support all those who give their time and energy to support our life-changing research.

Here’s how some of our amazing supporters have raised funds for the Bionics Institute.

Cynthia’s 50km fun run

In September 2020, Cynthia McLarty commemorated her 50th birthday by running 50km and raising over $7500 towards the Bionics Institute’s infant hearing research.

Cynthia is a long-time supporter of the Bionics Institute and has often volunteered her time. Cynthia’s son Sam was born profoundly deaf and, at 9 months old, became one of the youngest children in Victoria to receive a cochlear implant.

The funds raised by Cynthia have supported the development of EarGenie™, a new hearing test for babies with hearing loss. EarGenie will enable clinicians to select the right treatment as early as possible, giving these children the best chance to hear different sounds and learn to talk. Cynthia’s original goal was to run from her home all the way to Mornington.

However, due to strict COVID-19 lockdown restrictions, Cynthia ran the whole distance over 2 days in a circuit that kept her within just 5km of her home.

‘Sam caught up with other kids and was speaking normally by the age of 4 with the help of his cochlear implant,’ said Cynthia. ‘We tell other parents that we don’t regret it – it was the best thing for Sam. We are so grateful to the Bionics Institute for enabling Sam to talk and live a full, normal life.’

Suzanne’s open garden

Suzanne was a recipient of a cochlear implant over ten years ago, and it had such a positive impact on her life, she wanted to give back to the Institute whose founder Professor Graeme Clark invented the bionic ear. Initially, Suzanne was involved as a volunteer, and through this involvement, she developed a close relationship with Prof Colette McKay, Leader of our Translational Hearing Research program and Principal Scientist at the Bionics Institute.

Suzanne has always been a keen gardener, and whilst gazing over her beautiful garden a few years back, was sad to think she was the only one who got to enjoy it. This was a light bulb moment for Suzanne, when she realised she could open her beautiful garden to the public to raise money and awareness for the Bionics Institute.

Money raised from Suzanne’s Open Garden provided funding for the BabiLab at the Bionics Institute, Australia’s first brain imaging lab specifically for hearing research, which is spearheading new methods to improve the quality of life for hearing impaired babies and young children.

‘I am now celebrating 11 years since I myself received the gift of hearing with a cochlear implant, which has transformed my life. My gratitude is boundless – my indebtedness never-ending.’