Children’s Mercy Kansas City receives gifts—totaling $150 million

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Two of Kansas City’s families joined together to donate $150 million to Children’s Mercy Kansas City.

Their gift constitutes the largest one-time gift ever made to a children’s hospital for pediatric research, the Hall Family Foundation and the Sunderland Foundation each donated $75 million to kickstart the construction of the future home of the Children’s Research Institute and accelerate the recruitment of top researchers from around the globe.

Located on the hospital’s Adele Hall Campus in downtown Kansas City, the new research building consists of a nine-story structure making up approximately 375,000 square feet. As a result, the Children’s Research Institute will house nearly six times more space for pediatric research than currently exists at Children’s Mercy. When fully staffed, Children’s Mercy will grow its research enterprise tenfold as a result of this donation—with everyone striving to find much-needed answers for kids and their families.

“We have an opportunity to change the lives of children by conducting research that will create more understanding and deliver cures or diagnostics that go beyond the individual patient,” said Tom Curran, chief scientific officer at Children’s Mercy Kansas City, executive director of the Children’s Research Institute and the Donald J. Hall Eminent Scholar in Pediatric Research. “So, in a sense, by treating one child here at Children’s Mercy, we may impact thousands elsewhere.”

Several of the windows are a different color from the rest. Those windows represent the genetic anomalies found in the DNA of children with specific rare diseases – just some of the difficult cases and questions the researchers inside the building are trying to solve.

The Hall Family Foundation was founded in 1943 by Joyce and Elizabeth Hall, along with Joyce’s brother Rollie B. Hall, to promote the health, welfare and happiness of school-age children; the advancement and diffusion of knowledge; activities for the improvement of public health; and advancement of social welfare.

The Sunderland Foundation (formerly the Lester T. Sunderland Foundation) was established in 1945 by Lester T. Sunderland, who served as president of Ash Grove Cement Company for 33 years. Ash Grove Cement, which the Sunderland Family recently sold to CRH plc in Dublin, Ireland, is considered the largest cement company in the U.S.

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