Celebrating 25 years of helping… | Alannah & Madeline Foundation Skip to main content

Every year, 13,000 children are taken into emergency care because they’re at serious risk of harm or have no safe place to live. Many arrive with nothing but the clothes they are wearing.

That’s 35 children every day.   

For 25 years, national not-for-profit, the Alannah & Madeline Foundation has provided vital support for children and young people who’ve experienced violence and trauma to help them recover, heal, grow – and thrive.   

Yet, despite helping three million children and their families, there’s still more work to do.   

The Foundation is holding its inaugural Alannah & Madeline Day on Tuesday, 13 September to raise money to support children to live free from violence and trauma.   

Every dollar donated today between 8am and 8pm will be doubled by a generous group of donors, meaning donations will go twice as far and have twice the impact to help keep our young ones safe.   

There are still too many children and young people exposed to violence and trauma, says Walter Mikac AM, who founded the Alannah & Madeline Foundation in 1997 in memory of his two small daughters who lost their lives in the 1996 Port Arthur tragedy.    

“The world has changed in 25 years, but the need to keep children safe hasn’t,” Walter said.   

Children have a right to be safe. It’s our mission to uphold that right so that they can thrive.”   

The Foundation’s CEO Sarah Davies AM said that family and domestic violence is a major health and social issue in Australia.    

“It occurs across all socio-economic, demographic and age groups, but predominantly affects women and children.  We know children are more vulnerable to family and domestic violence.  And we know it is increasing.”   

The Family, Domestic and Sexual Violence Report from the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare told us that almost 2.1 million adults reported witnessing violence towards their mother by a partner before the age of 15.    

“Children witnessed family violence incidents on over 34,000 occasions, according to 2021 Crime Statistics Agency data,” Sarah said. 

“It also found that 77.2 per cent of children who witnessed a police-reported family violence incident had a future interaction with the justice system within five years. 

Of the adults who experienced family violence, more than three-quarters said their child saw or heard the violence.”   

That’s just the tip of the iceberg - statistics really tell only part of the story, she said.   

“Our experiences with these children and young people tell us they suffer. They suffer in their kinders and early learning centres, in their primary schools, in their secondary schools, in their homes. They suffer quietly and, sometimes, they suffer greatly.”   

Walter Mikac is asking everyone to dig deep for the Foundation’s first Alannah & Madeline Day, so it can continue to champion the rights of children and young people to be safe from violence and trauma.   
Just $50 means a child in need receives a Buddy Bag. And this will double to $100 on Alannah & Madeline Day – two children will receive a Buddy Bag.   

“Only when a child is safe is their best future possible,” Walter said. “That’s why we do what we do. Together, we can help traumatised children grow – and thrive.”   

To donate, visit givingday.amf.org.au   

*Alannah & Madeline Day is proudly supported by the Elsie Cameron Foundation. 

For more information or for interviews, please call media manager Deb Morris on 0499 202 001 or email [email protected]