Perron Institute welcomes Ruby the quokka to celebrate 40th anniversary

Tyra PetersSound Telegraph
The Perron Institute is celebrating its 40th anniversary with the release of its mascot Ruby.
Camera IconThe Perron Institute is celebrating its 40th anniversary with the release of its mascot Ruby. Credit: Supplied

Ruby the quokka is the latest arrival at Rockingham General Hospital, where she has been welcomed into Elanora’s Gift Shop to help raise awareness for the Perron Institute and its role in neuroscience research.

Ruby is the Institute’s mascot and is helping to celebrate 40 years of world-leading brain research in 2022. The Institute is WA’s longest-established neurological medical research organisation and is renowned both nationally and internationally.

Every purchase of Ruby will help raise funds for the continued research at the Perron Institute.

The significance of the quokka comes from Emeritus Professor Byron Kakulas’ discovery that he could regenerate the muscles of the Rottnest Island quokka. His research on muscle disease and regeneration has helped to deliver life-changing treatments to people worldwide.

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Marketing and fundraising director Denise Cheir said she was grateful for the support from hospital retail outlets.

“To celebrate both the significance of the 40th anniversary, known as ruby, and also Emeritus Professor Kakalus’ muscle regeneration success in the world’s happiest animal, we identified what we think is a very likeable quokka and called her Ruby,” she said.

“We ordered 500 because we are sure that once people see her, especially knowing the relevance of the research and the longevity of the Institute, that she will be in high demand.”

All proceeds raised from the purchases of Ruby will enable the institute to continue with research to support conditions such as motor neurone disease, multiple sclerosis, diabetes and even COVID-19.

“Like every other not-for-profit, every dollar raised goes back into helping us achieve our research goals. We also have to apply for grants which are not always successful, so support from our community is vital to keep the Institute operating,” Ms Cheir said.

“Prior to COVID-19, most people might not have thought about the importance of medical research.

“COVID-19 has raised awareness of how research takes time and funding to continue to benefit the community and ultimately giving back feels good and is good for us.”

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