A Jewish philanthropic family has given £1.2 million to help a world-leading biomedical science institute in London reach a wider public audience.
The Dangoor family, led by David and Judy, gave the sizeable sum to the Francis Crick Institute at Kings Cross (known as ‘the Crick’) this week, in a nod to David’s late father Sir Naim and his interests in education.
The Crick will use the money to reach different audiences, from scientists to schoolchildren, including a new public-focused website content and a large LED screen outside the Crick to promote awareness of its work to passers-by.
Scientists in the new £700 million building work on cutting-edge problems, including Covid-19. Its lab data on variants, antibodies and vaccines currently informs policy decisions around the world.
It is not the first time the Dangoor family has funded the Crick, channelling £5 million into its work, following it with this week’s £1.2m from Dangoor Education, which is the philanthropic arm of the family’s Exilarch’s Foundation.
Interestingly, it is the latest major boost to the world-renowned research institute from a charity of Jewish origins. In 2013, when plans for the Crick were first unveiled, they came with an initial £3 million set-up grant from the Wolfson Foundation, named after the late Sir Isaac Wolfson, revered chairman of Great Universal Stores.
Both David and his wife Judy have backgrounds in science. Announcing the donations, he said his father’s experience – fleeing Iraq in the 1960s when the situation for Jews worsened – continued to shape the family’s giving.
“All he took with him was his family and his education,” said David, noting how Sir Naim went on to build a property and business empire after arriving in the UK.
“He had developed a different perspective on the transience of wealth, and he wanted to show thanks to the UK for having taken us in by helping others. So, education was a very visceral choice for our family.
“It’s a treasure that you give someone, and they carry with them all their life. By sharing knowledge, you can help people help themselves. It empowers people beyond their own expectation.”
Crick Director Paul Nurse said: “This support will ensure that we can continue to encourage and advocate for meaningful public engagement in science.”
Thank you for helping to make Jewish News the leading source of news and opinion for the UK Jewish community. Today we're asking for your invaluable help to continue putting our community first in everything we do.
Unlike other Jewish media, we do not charge for content. That won’t change. Because we are free, we rely on advertising to cover our costs. This vital lifeline, which has dropped in recent years, has fallen further due to coronavirus.
For as little as £5 a month you can help sustain the vital work we do in celebrating and standing up for Jewish life in Britain.
Jewish News holds our community together and keeps us connected. Like a synagogue, it’s where people turn to feel part of something bigger. It also proudly shows the rest of Britain the vibrancy and rich culture of modern Jewish life.
You can make a quick and easy one-off or monthly contribution of £5, £10, £20 or any other sum you’re comfortable with.
100% of your donation will help us continue celebrating our community, in all its dynamic diversity...
Being a community platform means so much more than producing a newspaper and website. One of our proudest roles is media partnering with our invaluable charities to amplify the outstanding work they do to help us all.
There’s no shortage of oys in the world but Jewish News takes every opportunity to celebrate the joys too, through projects like Night of Heroes, 40 Under 40 and other compelling countdowns that make the community kvell with pride.
In the first collaboration between media outlets from different faiths, Jewish News worked with British Muslim TV and Church Times to produce a list of young activists leading the way on interfaith understanding.
Royal Mail issued a stamp honouring Holocaust hero Sir Nicholas Winton after a Jewish News campaign attracted more than 100,000 backers. Jewish Newsalso produces special editions of the paper highlighting pressing issues including mental health and Holocaust remembrance.
In an age when news is readily accessible, Jewish News provides high-quality content free online and offline, removing any financial barriers to connecting people.
Voice of our community to wider society
The Jewish News team regularly appears on TV, radio and on the pages of the national press to comment on stories about the Jewish community. Easy access to the paper on the streets of London also means Jewish News provides an invaluable window into the community for the country at large.
We hope you agree all this is worth preserving.