Desjardins and the Montreal Children Hospital partner to support the next generation of leaders in pediatric research

The partnership agreement will allow scholarships to be awarded to young pediatric researchers

Montreal, December 17 , 2014 The Research Institute of the Montreal Children Hospital (MCH) is pleased to announce a major partnership agreement with Desjardins Group to fund the Desjardins Scholarships in Child Health. This collaboration will allow young talented researchers specialized in pediatrics to benefit from research scholarships for a total of $1,000,000 over 10 years.

As the only pediatric teaching hospital for McGill University’s Faculty of Medicine, one of the most prestigious in the world, the MCH is responsible for much of the training of young doctors and researchers in clinical pediatrics and child health research.


 “The goal is to help the next generation of young researchers succeed,” says Dr. Jacquetta Trasler, Director of Child Health Research at the RI-MUHC. “This financial assistance will provide successful candidates with a unique opportunity to work with leading researchers and achieve a critical step in advancing their education and scientific career.”

 “We are proud to associate the name of Desjardins with the cutting-edge pediatric research conducted at the MCH. For us, education is a priority and we believe that knowledge contributes to the advancement of society and helps people reach their full potential,” says Ms. Monique F. Leroux, Chair of the Board and CEO of Desjardins Group. “Our scholarships will allow many students to further perfect their skills through access to advanced education.”

 “I would like to express our gratitude for the generosity of Desjardins,” says Mr. Greg Rokos, Member of the Board of Directors and past Chair of the Montreal Children’s Hospital Foundation. “This important investment will enable our Foundation to continue to support the excellent care provided by the Montreal Children’s Hospital through the advancement of research and teaching in pediatric medicine. The Desjardins Group will help us to raise the bar even higher!”

A committee of more than 100 reviewers evaluates the applications according to academic skills, research progress, training, and letters of recommendation before selecting the recipients of a Desjardins Scholarship in Child Health.

This year, eight young researchers have the privilege of benefiting from a Desjardins Scholarship in Child Health.:

  • Bahaaeldin  AbdRabo, MD : Neurosurgery
  • Kelly Benisty : Nephrology
  • Kyle Dickinson : Nephrology
  • Marie-Lyne Fillion : Nephrology
  • Nancy Lévesque, PhD : Genetics
  • Joanna Merckx, MD : Immunology and Infectious Diseases
  • Namrata Varma , MD :  Otorhinolaryngology
  • Laura Whidden : Genetic Development

The Montreal Children’s Hospital has more than 100 researchers. Research staff also includes more than 100 technicians and more than 100 graduate students and postdoctoral fellows. All have considerable expertise in several areas of research, including genetics, public health and preventive medicine, growth and development, oncology, psychosocial issues and cardiorespiratory health.

About the Montreal Children’s Hospital Foundation

The Montreal Children’s Hospital is the pediatric teaching hospital for McGill University’s Faculty of Medicine. It is recognized as a leader in the field of specialized and highly specialized care for infants, children and adolescents across Quebec. The mission of the Foundation is to support excellence in patient care, teaching, and research at the Montreal Children’s Hospital. The Foundation’s The Best Care for Children campaign has raised more than $100 million for the construction of the new Montreal Children’s Hospital on the Glen site. This new facility will open in 2015. For more information, visit

About Desjardins Group

Desjardins is the leading cooperative financial group in Canada and the fifth largest cooperative financial group in the world. As the largest private employer in Quebec, Desjardins generates 65,000 direct and indirect jobs and has been listed among Canada’s top 100 employers by Mediacorp.

Desjardins actively promotes the cooperative movement and is strongly committed to support health, healthy lifestyles, education, and arts and culture. Desjardins redistributes the equivalent of $1 million per day to communities in the form of donations, sponsorships, and dividends. Desjardins also supports humanitarian causes and economic development projects, notably internationally. 

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For more information:

Kim Fraser

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