The Inger Rice Foundation was established in 1972 by Mrs Inger Rice AM.
Inger Rice lived in Canberra from 1969 until 1973 with her husband, the then Ambassador of the United States of America to Australia, Walter Rice. Impressed by the care given to her by the Canberra Mothercraft Society, following the birth of her son, she decided to establish a foundation that promoted relationships between parents and their very young children.
The Foundation provides funding to Australian charities and not-for-profit organisations whose programs support the development of relationships between parents or carers and their children from birth to primary school age. The Foundation also provides funding to prenatal programs.
Inger Rice was quoted in the Canberra Times in 1972: “I intend the Foundation to be a lasting tribute to the friendship between women of America and Australia. I wanted to do something constructive whilst I was here and I could think of nothing better than something for mother and child welfare, in addition to whatever Australia is already doing.”
Although she has not lived in Australia since 1973 Inger Rice has continued to actively support the Foundation. Through her vision and financial support, she has improved the lives of many Australian families and has created an enduring Australian American relationship.
In 2015 she received an Honorary Member of the Order of Australia in recognition of her contribution to the welfare of Australian families through the work of the Inger Rice Foundation.
The Foundation is registered as a charity with the Australian Charities and Not-for-Profit Commission. It is administered through a Trustee Company consisting of a maximum of nine Board Members, all of whom are volunteers.
Three Board Members are Company Directors and hold the positions of Chairperson, Honorary Secretary and Honorary Treasurer. One Board Member is appointed from the American Embassy, one Board Member is a representative of the Health sector and the others are selected from diverse sections of the Community.
The Board meets every two months from February to consider applications for funding.
“I intend the Foundation to be a lasting tribute to the friendship between women of America and Australia. I wanted to do something constructive whilst I was here and I could think of nothing better than something for mother and child welfare, in addition to whatever Australia is already doing.”
Mrs Inger Rice AM, 1972.