EORTC Charitable Trust
Honorary President: H.S.H. Prince Albert II of Monaco
Honorary Vice-President: Sir Christopher Mallaby, London (GB)
Chairman: Comte Diego du Monceau de Bergendal, Brussels (BE)
Members of the General Assembly
Chairman: Comte Diego du Monceau de Bergendal
Vice-Chairmen: Sir David Tang KBE, Honk Kong and Professor John Smyth, Edinburgh (GB)
Director: Mrs. Victoria Agnew, London (GB)
Professor Jean-Yves Blay, Lyon (FR)
Mr. Christian Boel, Hellerup (DK)
Monsieur Alain Camu, Brussels (BE)
Dr. Gérard Depadt, Lille (FR)
Professor Alexander M.M. Eggermont, Villejuif (FR)
H.E. Ambassador Evelyne Genta, Monaco (MC)
Dr. Jean de Gunzburg, London (GB)
Mr. Luc van Haute, Brussels (BE)
Mrs. Elizabeth Hjorth, Copenhagen (DK)
Mrs. Cora Honing, Amsterdam (NL)
Professor Jean-Claude Horiot, Genolier (CH)
Professor Klas Kärre, Stockholm (SE)
Comte Aymar de Lastours, Paris (FR)
Mr. Erwin Lauwers, Brussels (BE)
Ms. Kate Law, London (GB)
Mr. Marc Leland, London (GB)
Mr. Oscar M. Lewisohn, London (GB)
Mrs. Sally Lo MBE, Hong Kong (HK)
H.R.H. Prince Guillaume of Luxembourg, Contern (LU)
Dr. Rolf Marti, Bern (CH)
Professor J. Gordon McVie, Milan (IT)
Professor Françoise Meunier, Brussels (BE)
Professor Allan T. van Oosterom, Antwerp (BE)
Mr. Ole Alexander Opdalshei, Oslo (NO)
Professor Martine Piccart, Brussels (BE)
H.E. Ambassador Marie-Thérèse Pictet-Althann, Geneva (CH)
Mrs. Harriet Roth, London (D/GB)
Mrs. Suzan Sabanci-Dinçer, Istanbul, (TR)
Mrs. Bruno Schroder, London (GB)
Dr. Piero Sierra, Milan (IT)
Mrs. Cigdem Simavi, Istanbul (TR)
Lady Solti, London (GB)
Professor Roger Stupp, Zurich (CH)
Mr. Robert Waley-Cohen, London (GB)
In 1976, the EORTC Foundation was established by Royal Decree under the laws of the Kingdom of Belgium as an international association under Belgian Law with the specific aim of raising funds for the activities of the EORTC, to support the structure of the organization, and to support independent academic research projects. It receives substantial funds from National Cancer Charities. All the major European National Cancer Charities which support the work of the EORTC are represented in the General Assembly, as well as the Hong Kong Cancer Fund.
In 2006, the EORTC Foundation changed its name to The EORTC Charitable Trust, to take account of changes in Belgian Law. The aims of The EORTC Charitable Trust remain exactly the same.
Since the EORTC operates through existing national institutions and hospitals, its financial needs, while growing, are relatively modest in relation to what it is able to achieve. The financial and economic crisis that began in 2007 and its repercussions have inevitably had an impact on charitable giving and philanthropy. It is a relief that the economic situation in Europe is now improving. Yet there are some serious risks and difficulties, so the prospects may remain unsteady for some time. The years of crisis have created difficulties for charities across Europe and the climate for fundraising remains difficult. Once again, this underlines the vital importance to EORTC of the continued support of the European National Cancer Charities and the Charitable Trust would like to express its thanks and appreciation for this.
During 2014 several major changes in the leadership of the Charitable Trust have taken place. The retirement took place, after 10 wonderful years, of our Honorary President, H.R.H Princess Astrid of Belgium, and she is succeeded by H.S.H Prince Albert II of Monaco. Prince Albert visited EORTC in January 2014 with Princess Astrid and Prince Lorenz. He confirmed to us and to the senior staff at EORTC his desire to assist us in our work and to promote the cause of cancer research. The Charitable Trust is honoured to welcome His Serene Highness and looks forward to working with him very much.
Sir Ronald Grierson, who founded the Charitable Trust in 1976 and then was Chairman for twenty five years, retired as our Honorary Vice President. His tireless energy and commitment to the EORTC and the Charitable Trust over the remarkable span of 38 years have been an astonishing achievement of dedicated generosity and leadership. He has helped to raise significant awareness about the importance of clinical research to develop better treatments for cancer and he has raised significant funds towards that aim
Sir Christopher Mallaby retired as Chairman after 14 years and became Honorary Vice President of the Charitable Trust. He is succeeded as Chairman by Comte Diego du Monceau de Bergendal.
Professor John Smyth, a long- time member of the Council and a member of EORTC for many years, became a Vice Chairman of the Charitable Trust.
Since the last Annual Report, the Charitable Trust has welcomed three new Members to its Council and General Assembly – Mrs. Suzan Sabanci-Dinçer, Mrs. Cigdem Simavi and Mr. Robert Waley-Cohen.
In 2011 The EORTC Charitable Trust entered into an important partnership with Alliance Boots, the international pharmacy and beauty products group, to create EORTC’s Biobank for Colorectal Cancer. This major project, known as SPECTAcolor, will be the first pan-European facility able to create tailored therapies for cancer sufferers through the knowledge now becoming available from the mapping of the human genome. The Biobank will store and analyze tumor samples which will allow scientists to build up a long term picture of the development of the cancers and the individual genes that are associated with them. These advances will enable oncologists to determine which therapy is going to be of most benefit to an individual patient and thus to create a personalized plan of treatment. Alliance Boots has committed to providing €5,000,000 over five years for this project by fundraising through its companies in Europe and elsewhere. Since the beginning of 2012, when the many fundraising initiatives got underway, nearly €2,000,000 has been raised by the staff and employees of the Alliance Boots companies all over Europe. The development of the Biobank continues rapidly with 238 patients enrolled in the past year.
Following the interest from the scientific community across Europe and worldwide in SPECTAcolor and the latter’s success, EORTC has decided to launch four more Biobanks in the SPECTA platform – in brain, lung, and prostate cancer and in melanoma. This is an exciting and important development of the original vision and EORTC’s Biobanks will become a key feature of research in Europe to develop better treatments for cancer.
The Charitable Trust wishes to raise funds for an education programme at EORTC for young Turkish scientists and to provide funds for a one year fellowship there for a Turkish oncologist. The Charitable Trust would also like to raise sufficient funds to support the work of a Liaison Officer in Turkey to increase EORTC’s collaboration with scientists there and increase the participation of Turkish patients in EORTC’s international trials of cancer treatments.
A fundraising tour took place to Istanbul in the autumn of 2013 and was extremely successful. We would like express our deep gratitude to Mrs Cigdem Simavi and Mrs Suzan Sabançi-Dincer for their great generosity and help in making the visit so memorable for everyone.
One of EORTC’s important research projects, concerning especially dangerous types of leukemia in the elderly, sometimes as a repercussion of successful treatment of an earlier cancer of a different type, has been supported by The HRH Prince Alwaleed Foundation through the Charitable Trust. The first phase is completed and the research project was presented at the American Society of Hematology’s highly prestigious conference in New Orleans by Dr. Safaa Ramadan, who leads the study.
Another area of major importance and interest to EORTC and the Charitable Trust is survivorship and the many issues that affect patients related with that in their daily lives after successful treatment. In January 2014 EORTC organized the first Pan-European Survivorship Conference in Brussels to highlight many of these issues for the first time in an open forum, bringing together patients, scientists, insurance companies and bankers and healthcare specialists. Work will continue on these issues and a second conference is planned for 2016.
In addition to this initiative, the Charitable Trust has secured support for an important project in long term survivorship of cancer and the medium and long term repercussions of the disease and its treatment to which patients may be exposed. This phenomenon, so far, is little understood. In the Sallie Snowman Survivorship Initiative EORTC will study key clinical questions concerning the effects of both tumours and treatments. These include the relationship of dose levels in chemotherapy and radiotherapy to long term effects; long term cognitive function in patients after chemotherapy and socio-economical and psychological issues. EORTC, as a pan-European cancer clinical and translational research infrastructure, has the unique networking capacity to follow patients for very long time.
Rare cancers, representing one fifth of all cancer cases, are little understood and are treated mostly by empirical reference to past cases, not scientific knowledge and genetic analysis. The patient numbers for each of these rare tumours are small and cases are scattered geographically, so that research into a single disease is very difficult. The purpose of this initiative is to bring new understanding of rare cancers and then new treatments.
Oncologists on both sides of the Atlantic are working together to find genetic commonalities present in several rare tumours, to try to provide new and effective therapies for the selected tumours. EORTC is leading this initiative in Europe and the Charitable Trust has received a commitment of an annual contribution towards the study for several years and will continue to work to raise more funds.
During 2013 the Charitable Trust received core support of €1.3 million from various European National Cancer Charities and the Hong Kong Cancer Fund and made a core grant of this amount to EORTC. We are deeply grateful to the National Cancer Charities which contributed and expect this level of support to continue. We would like to reiterate the Charitable Trust’s thanks to the National Charities which maintained the level of their grants in these difficult times.
The EORTC’s Fellowship Programme continues to grow successfully, enabling young scientists to come to EORTC to learn the highest standards of clinical trials methodology. Established in 1991 to promote European cancer clinical research, the EORTC Fellowship Program encourages physicians, statisticians and scientists from all over the world to stay for up to three years at EORTC Headquarters in Brussels. This fellowship program is specifically linked to EORTC Groups, EORTC research program, or specific research projects undertaken by EORTC Headquarters. As of May 2014, research fellowships had been awarded to 144 fellows from 37 countries. The Charitable Trust’s support for these Fellowships is received from private individuals, National Cancer Charities, companies and foundations for which we are very grateful. We express our thanks for all this support.
The admiration we have for the work of EORTC and its exceptional contribution to clinical cancer research over the past 52 years continues unabated and the Charitable Trust is proud to do everything we can to support it.
The EORTC Charitable Trust - Contact
Comte Diego du Monceau de Bergendal
Mrs. Victoria Agnew
The EORTC Charitable Trust