Record year for Alzheimer’s Research UK as income reaches £42.2m

21 September 2022

Alzheimer’s Research UK is celebrating a year that has seen it bounce back from one of the most challenging periods to date to invest more in research than ever before.

Overall, the UK’s leading dementia research charity reached an income for 2021/22 of £42.2m, with an incredible £39.2m of that coming from donations. As a result, the Cambridgeshire-based charity was able to invest £28.6m in its charitable activities including £23.6m in pioneering dementia research.

This record financial performance follows a challenging year for the charity due to COVID-19. During the pandemic, Alzheimer’s Research UK was forced to put much of its usual activity on hold, labs were hit by closures and restrictions, and fundraising activities were cancelled or curtailed. But 2021/22 saw the charity emerge stronger and more determined to help bring about life-changing treatments for people affected by dementia.

Highlights from the year include:

  • Funding researchers to make over 500 new discoveries. Each one contributes a clearer, more detailed picture of the diseases that cause dementia and how to stop them.
  • Building on previous efforts to support early career dementia researchers, whose work was hit hard by the pandemic, to put in place a long-term strategy for keeping these talented scientists in the field. This included investing £1.2m in six new projects led by early career researchers, launching a new online platform to bring together funding opportunities and career development resources, as well as establishing a mentoring scheme.
  • Keeping pressure on government to deliver its Dementia Moonshot pledge to boost funding for dementia research, and calling for a taskforce model, inspired by the approach that delivered COVID-19 vaccines, to speed up the development and roll-out of new dementia treatments. Last month, this call was heard when the then-Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, announced the launch of a new ‘Dementia Mission’. Now Liz Truss has been appointed as the new Prime Minister, Alzheimer’s Research UK will continue to hold the government to account on this promise.
  • Launching a new brand film, as part of the charity’s Make Breakthroughs Possible campaign, which reached 32 million people across 60 countries underlining the power of our brains and the hope that lies in research. The film featured celebrity supporter Shobna Gulati, whose personal experience of dementia helped increase awareness within South Asian audiences (who tend to be underserved with messages about dementia).
  • Launching our cross-organisational Equity, Diversity and Inclusion strategy, helping ensure we fund research that’s representative of the population living with dementia, support a diverse research workforce, and champion the equity, diversity and inclusion of our employees.

Shirley Cramer, Interim Chief Executive of Alzheimer’s Research UK, said:

We were always open and vocal about the challenges we faced due to the pandemic, and we are humbled that our supporters rallied around us and have continued to as personal finances become more squeezed than ever. We had always pledged to redouble our efforts as soon as we were able to, and thanks to all those who continued to donate, fundraise and volunteer their time, we’ve been able to do just that. We’re privileged to have such an amazing community of people standing with us in our mission to bring about life-changing treatments for dementia, the need has never been greater.

“We’re proud to have been able to continue our work to support early career researchers, launching new long-term initiatives to keep these scientists working on dementia and supporting them to become future leaders. These last two years have been particularly hard for all those affected by dementia – a condition that remains one of our leading causes of death and still has no treatments available in the UK that can stop or slow the underlying disease. We’re making incredible progress and we are hugely grateful to all those who have made this progress possible – we’ll keep working to transform the lives of everyone affected by dementia.”

To learn more about Alzheimer’s Research UK’s year, visit http://alzres.uk/annual-reports