We provide assistance with program proposals


All program proposals are assessed by our project partners advisory panel


Mr. Liam Roche

Dr. Phil House

Dr. Chathri Amaratunge

Dr. Vignesh Raja

Ms. Jennifer Cartwright

Mr. Neilson De Souza

Ms Eileen Nicol

Ms. Margie O’Neill

Ms Bev Tysoe

Information about our review and approval process can be downloaded using the links below. For assistance with a grant application contact our Program Liaison Officer, Ms. Anne Russell-Brown


Anne Russell-Brown

Anne was previously group director for social outreach at St John of God Health Care, state director for Mission Australia, National partnerships director at Alcoa Australia, an inaugural member of the Centre for Social Impact Advisory Council (UWA), a member of the Social Enterprise Fund Advisory Group, a board member of Fremantle Medicare Local, WACOSS, WANADA and  Protective Behaviours WA, a director of West Australian Primary Health Alliance, and a board member of the Perth Eye Foundation. 

Anne Russel-Brown

Contact Information:

Ms. Anne Russell-Brown

Program Liaison Officer

Perth Eye Foundation


Our current program partners include

Australian Vision Research are working with Jason Charng, David Alonso-Caniero, and David Mackey to develop a machine learning algorithm to grade autofluoresce fundus images.

Fundus autofluorescence is a characteristic finding in a range of retinal diseases. The imaging technique requires a bright flash photograph of the fundus using blue light. The pigment epithelial breakdown product lipofuscin fluoresces, emitting blue-green light. The presence of this sign is an early marker of several retinal diseases.

Autofluorescent dots (within  coloured circles) identified manually (left) and by algorithm (right).

Dr Dorothy Graham et al, King Edward Memorial Hospital

This study aims to expand the understanding of increased pre-eclampsia risk in expectant diabetic women. Retinal images will be analysed using an artificial intelligence algorithm to look for markers of increased risk of pre-eclampsia in the retinal microcirculation.

Participants will record their diet and undergo analysis of blood lipids and circulating markers of placental function, as well as having routine clinical examinations. The potential therapeutic effect of low dose aspirin in this settng will also be tested. Participants will be seen 5 times during pregnancy and at 6 to 12 weeks post delivery. The expected completion date is early 2025.

The lead investigator is Dr. Dorothy Graham, an obstetric physician with clinical and research interests in diabetes in pregnancy, and preeclampsia (PhD in cellular activation in preeclampsia). Other members of the research team include Dr Mary Nangrahary and Prof .  Brendan McQuillain (cardiologists), Ms. Phoebe Fitzgerald (dietician), Prof. Yogi Kanagasingam (artificial intelligence), Dr Vignesh Raja (ophthalmologist), Drs. Chaaya Mehrohtra and Dr. Scott White (obstetricians), Dr. Eileen Sung (obstetric physician), and Prof. Dorota Doherty (biostatistics).


Assoc. Prof. Chandra Balaratnasingam and a team of investigators from Perth Children’s Hospital, Lions Eye Institute, and the University of Western Australia, are developing a novel method of scanning the retinas of children with diabetes to reveal alterations in blood flow that precede clinically detectable diabetic retinopathy (such as haemorrhages and vascular malformations). 

The pre-clinical changes in retinal perfusion revealed by these scans that most strongly predict progression to vision threatening retinal damage will be determined. That knowledge should enable future generations of diabetics to reduce the risk of vision loss from diabetic complications in their retinas. 

An example of a macular perfusion scan 

Assoc. Prof. Balaratnasingam

Prof. Tim Davis and a team from Fremantle Hospital are investigating the  longitudinal relationship between carotid vascular disease and diabetic retinopathy.

Diabetic retinopathy is a complication of diabetes where bleeding and blood vessel occlusion effect the retinal vessels at the back of the eye. In Australia diabetics are advised to have their eyes checked at least once every two years but these checks do not reveal the state of the carotid circulation. Previous research (1) has shown that carotid disease is associated with diabetic retinopathy, but does diabetic retinopathy lead to carotid disease or vice versa? 

The current project will analyse the longitudinal relationship between carotid disease and diabetic retinopathy in order to determine if diabetics with early diabetic retinopathy are more likely to develop carotid disease which may lead to stroke.

A patient having an optical coherence tomography angiogram 

The investigators will look for carotid arterial disease with ultrasound, and use optical coherence tomography angiography (OCTA) to disclose the earliest signs of retinal vessel disease. Recruitment has begun but the study is progressing slowly due to Covid. 

(1) Drinkwater et al. Cardiovasc Diabetol (2020) 19:43


OCT angiogram image

Drs Tom Cuneen and Joel Mudri will investigate the use of anterior segment optical coherence tomography (OCT) in diagnosing ocular surface squamous neoplasia (OSSN) at the SCGH in Perth. They will compare preoperative analysis of OSSN with histological diagnosis following excision. A secondary aim is to produce baseline data of patients with suspected OSSN at SCGH and to characterise preoperatively OCT features of OSSN compared to the existing literature.

Why work with us?

Comforting patient during eye surgery

Efficient project approval

Merit based approvals

Programs will be approved in the first half of each calendar year.  

The links below will download pdf copies of our “Program Proposal Fact Sheet’ and “Guidelines for Support Application.”

All program proposals that meet our project partnering guidelines will be considered. Since funding and resources are limited the projects expected to produce the greatest benefit will be approved.

The Helen Smith Award

Helen Smith OAM

Helen was the founding CEO of the Perth Eye Clinic and the Perth Eye Hospital.

After retiring as CEO she was appointed to the board of the Eye Surgery Foundation. Without her visionary leadership ESF charity would not have had the resources  to enable the formation of the Perth Eye Foundation.

Founding Charity CEO

The Award

The 2022 Helen Smith Award for the most impactful West Australian project was awarded to Dorothy Graham et al for their study of pre-eclampsia in diabetic mothers.

fostering knowledge giving sight

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