The Mary and Georg C. Ehrnrooth Foundation promotes medical research in ophthalmological and gastroenterological diseases. The Foundation’s purpose is fulfilled by awarding grants to researchers and research groups in the two fields. Over the years the Foundation has also participated in the financing of laboratory equipment. The grants are awarded on the Foundation’s anniversary 5 May, the birthday of Mary Ehrnrooth (b. Beckman).
The Foundation was founded in 1987 by Licentiate of Laws, member of parliament Georg C. Ehrnrooth to celebrate the memory of his wife, Mary Ehrnrooth, who had died the same year on 15 February. The couple had no children. The initial capital for the Foundation was donated by Georg C. Ehrnrooth who later made additional donations as well as bequeathed his estate to the Foundation.
Georg C. Ehrnrooth passed away on 17 October 2010 in Helsinki. He was the chair of the Foundation from its founding to his passing, in total over 20 years. He was succeeded by the Foundation’s current chair, Georg’s nephew MBA, M.P.S. Mikael Swanljung
The Foundation’s total sum of awarded grants has greatly increased since the late 1980s thanks to the positive growth of the Foundation’s capital. The progress has been especially strong since the early 2000s. When the Foundation’s annual grants totaled approximately 100 000 € in the early 2010s the Foundation today awards grants of up to half a million euros.
In 2017 the Foundation celebrated its 30th anniversary by awarding four anniversary prizes to eminent researchers in ophthalmological and gastroenterological diseases.
The Mary & Georg C. Ehrnrooth Foundation is one of four Ehrnrooth Foundations. Combined the Ehrnrooth Foundations support science, research, and societal projects with approximately six million euros annually. The other foundations are Ella & Georg Ehrnrooth Foundation, Magnus Ehrnrooth Foundation, and Louise & Göran Ehrnrooth Foundation.