In the beginning | Alannah & Madeline Foundation Skip to main content

On 28 April 1996 at the historical Port Arthur site in Tasmania, 35 people were tragically killed.

Two small children, Alannah and Madeline Mikac, aged six and three, along with their mother, died that day.

The Foundation was established after Alannah and Madeline's father, Walter Mikac AM received a letter from a Melbourne father, Dr Phil West, who also had two girls similar in age. Dr West was so affected by the horrific event that he wrote to Walter and suggested the establishment of a Foundation to be named in honour of Alannah and Madeline that would help survivors heal and bring hope to children in crisis.

The two men met in January 1997, and the Alannah & Madeline Foundation was born. Three months later, the Foundation was launched by then Prime Minster, the Hon John Howard OM AC SSI, on April 30, 1997.

Gaye and John Fidler, Port Arthur survivors, were also instrumental in helping to establish the Foundation, courageously sharing their story and experience and helping to lobby the Government for stricter gun control.

Many people came together to support the Foundation, which has since become a national organisation dedicated to keeping children and young people free from violence and trauma wherever they live, learn and play. We acknowledge their collective courage, vision and hard work.

As those responsible for continuing to bring this vision to life today, we pay our respects and gratitude to everyone involved in the founding and early years and celebrate their achievements as thousands of children and young people continue to benefit directly from their actions.

Today we honour those who came together to build hope from tragedy through the work that we continue to do. Your donation can ensure that this work can continue into the future.