Remember when you were nine years old?

Please take a minute to imagine you are just nine years old again. And this time, you are feeling the pain of constantly going without and being left behind.

Your family is struggling with serious financial hardship. You are finding it impossible to keep up at school because you don’t have what you need.

This is the reality for too many disadvantaged Australian children – including nine-year-old Max*.

Christmas Appeal

"I’m 9 years old. I have a brother, mum and dad."

“It was an extremely hard time for us all.”

Christmas Appeal

"I love my mum. When we lost our house she cried. I wish I could help."

“It was an extremely hard time for us all.”

Three years ago, Max’s dad lost his job. His family was forced to leave their home and stay with an aunt. Both of his parents tried hard to give Max and his brother everything they needed, but with little money and nine people sharing a tiny one-bedroom unit, they were reaching breaking point.

Max slept on the kitchen floor. His work-desk was the kitchen floor. Imagine desperately trying to study – trying to keep up with your classmates – but having nowhere private to concentrate.

Imagine what your future looks like through Max’s eyes.

Throughout the year, disadvantaged children like Max feel isolated and alone. At Christmas, it hurts even more. Please donate to our Christmas Appeal today.

Growing up in poverty means falling and staying behind in school

In Max’s case, poverty meant using old school supplies and worn-out uniforms because his family couldn’t afford new ones. At home, there was no one with the skills to support his learning – so Max quickly fell behind his peers.

Poverty has a huge, potentially lifelong impact on children. From an early age, kids living in poverty don’t have access to the books and learning materials they need. And, since parents often don’t have the necessary time or skills to support their children’s education, kids like Max start school behind their peers and never catch up.

Christmas Appeal

"I didn’t have what I needed in class and couldn’t keep up with other kids."

Together, we can end poverty, one student at a time

Christmas Appeal

"Then everything changed. I started Learning Club and they helped me."

Together, we can end poverty, one student at a time

With the generous support of people like you, Max was able to attend both our Learning Club and student2student programs and he’s never looked back.

After just one year of the student2student program, Max caught up to his peers in reading. He still continues to attend Learning Club, where he enjoys a quiet, supportive place to do his homework after school several times a week. These days, instead of staying on the sidelines, Max is an active participant at school and has his sights set on going to university.

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Growing up with your support can change a child’s life

Education is a proven pathway out of poverty. Our research shows that when you support a disadvantaged child’s education, you can help change their future. With your support, more disadvantaged children like Max can access our vital learning programs.

Will you help provide crucial support to 8,715 children just like Max? We need to raise $3.66 million by 31 December to make this possible.

Your support this Christmas will help more children living in poverty get the education they need to build a better future.

Christmas Appeal

"If The Smith Family can help me, I know they can help other kids too."

Help create a better future for some of Australia's poorest children

Our programs help disadvantaged children engage with their education, and create a better future for themselves. Our programs support children and young people to participate more fully in their education by providing innovative, evidence-based programs and emotional, practical and financial support throughout their schooling and tertiary education.

This support gives students the skills, motivation and essentials to stay in school and get the most from their education so they can create a better future for themselves. Two of our most widely implemented programs are Student2Student and Learning Club – both programs have helped students make significant progress in their learning.

Our programs

* Max’s name, location and associated images have been changed to protect his identity.