You can sponsor an Australian child today

When you don’t have what you need to fit in, school can feel like the worst place in the world.

One in seven Australian children and young people are growing up in poverty1, where even the bare necessities are hard to come by. In a family where there is no regular income, money goes on food, rent and bills. Finding money for a school uniform, proper shoes, textbooks or the next school excursion is often impossible.

Through no fault of their own, these disadvantaged children are struggling at school because they don’t have what they need to fit in, catch up or keep up with their peers.

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Kayla* was a bubbly little girl who dreamed of becoming a dancer, until tragedy struck.

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Kayla* was a bubbly little girl who dreamed of becoming a dancer, until tragedy struck.

When Kayla was just four years old her mum and dad were killed in a car accident. Her world turned upside down overnight. Thankfully, Kayla and her older sister had somewhere to go – their aunt and uncle, Ruth and Ray, took them in. But with three children of their own, money became impossibly tight.

The accident was a shock to everyone. And we've been really struggling with the money side of things.” – Ruth, Kayla’s guardian

On her first day of school, Kayla was already behind

From day one, through no one’s fault, Kayla was standing out at school and falling behind in her learning. Her classmates wore new uniforms and shoes; Kayla wore her cousin’s hand-me-downs and carried her school books in a plastic bag. Kayla’s bubbly, curious personality became increasingly hidden as she realised she couldn’t keep up at school.

It was devastating for Ruth and Ray to see - but they were struggling, too. Ray, a cabbie, worked overtime most days. Ruth picked up work wherever she could, as well as caring for five children. Still, it wasn’t enough for things like new uniforms and shoes that fit, a school bag and excursions. There weren’t enough hours in the day to help the little ones learn their alphabet and practice reading.

“When I ask Kayla how her day at school was, she says ‘great’. But I can see how much she’s struggling. I can see her fighting back the tears. It breaks my heart that I can’t give her what she needs and make things better for her.” – Ruth, Kayla’s guardian

You can change the life of a disadvantaged Australian child

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You can change the life of a disadvantaged Australian child

For $48 per month you can make a lasting difference to the life of one of these children.

Because it takes a big caring family to raise a child, each student is paired with two sponsors. This ensures your sponsored child receives life-changing, comprehensive support as long as they are at school, and enables them to acquire the skills they will need to create a better future.

Together, we can give some of Australia's most vulnerable children the support they urgently need.

Education is the key to a better future

Research shows that our three-pillar sponsorship approach improves educational outcomes for disadvantaged children.

Through sponsorship a child is provided the necessary financial support for vital school essentials that will help them fit in with their peers and build their confidence at school. Each sponsored child also receives guidance and support from one of our Learning for Life Coordinators who works with the child and family. Plus, sponsorship ensures access to extra educational support programs and mentoring that allows them to make the most of their education.

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For less than $1.60 a day, you can give a disadvantaged Australian child the school essentials they need to fit in and get ahead.

find out more

If you have any questions about sponsoring a disadvantaged Australian child please read our Frequently Asked Questions, call us on 1800 633 622 or email us on sponsorship@thesmithfamily.com.au.

Or read more about the 34,000 Australian children that The Smith Family sponsorship program helped last year.


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Our sponsorship program helped change the lives of more than 34,000 Australian children last year. View their stories now.

* Kayla’s name, location and associated images have been changed to protect her identity.
1ACOSS & SPRC (2016) Poverty in Australia, 2016, Australian Council of Social Services, Sydney.