Christmas Appeal

Liam could be a child living in your neighbourhood.

Liam began his life in a middle income family, but when he was in Year 5 his mother was diagnosed with cancer and things became tough at home. Then when his dad left his life was rocked again. Without a regular income the family needed to move to a more affordable house. As it became harder for Liam's mum to work, the family moved again and again, further and further away from Liam's school.

Liam's mother did everything she could for him and his sister, but Liam's home life had completely changed. With barely enough money for rent there was no money for schoolbooks or a uniform that fits.

Poverty came out of nowhere.

As it became harder for Liam's mum to work, the family moved again and again, further and further away from Liam's school.

Liam's poverty changed his life in a way he didn't understand

When mum and dad can't help, who do you ask?

"I didn't feel good at school anymore" - Liam, aged 8

Liam's poverty changed his life in a way he didn't understand

The support Liam was used to at home was gone. At school he withdrew; he didn’t feel like he fit in anymore. He struggled in class and couldn’t keep up with his homework. He wondered if he’d always feel this alone.

“I used to love school and have great friends. Then mum got sick and we had to move over and over again. I didn’t feel good at school anymore.” – Liam*, aged 8.

A generous gift from you today will help provide crucial support to 9,048 children just like Liam. We need your help to raise $3.8 million by 31 December.

Liam is just one of more than 1.1 million Australian children growing up in poverty.

Liam is being held back.

Liam is just one of more than 1.1 million Australian children growing up in poverty.

Today, one in six Australian children and young people are living in poverty1, where even life's basics are hard to come by.

Disadvantaged students are on average 2-3 years behind in reading and maths by the time they are 15 years old2.

The impact this can have on a child’s education is devastating, but you can help turn things around.

A donation this Christmas can make a difference

Liam doesn’t understand poverty, but it affects him every day. Your donation is the first step towards a better future for our most disadvantaged children. Please give generously.

Your support today will provide children like Liam the opportunity to participate in our learning and mentoring programs, which aim to help students improve their skills in areas that will make a big difference to their lives at school and beyond.

Just as poverty can come out of nowhere, so can the support that turns lives around.

Liam doesn't understand poverty.

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Our learning programs change lives.

The Smith Family helps.

Our learning programs change lives.

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. We provide targeted support that begins early in a child’s life and continues in a balanced long-term way throughout their first two decades. For the same overall investment, this approach is far more effective than concentrating support on a particular period of young people’s lives. This approach results in increases in high school graduation and university enrollments and decreases in welfare reliance and criminal convictions.

The Smith Family improves outcomes through evidence based educational support:

  • 87% of Learning Club participants agreed that going to a club helped them do better in class. 86% agreed that going to a club taught them they can do well if they try harder3.
  • 96% of students improved their reading. 83% of students reported that they enjoy reading more now through our student2student reading program.

Please help provide Liam, and thousands of Australian children growing up in poverty like him, with the essential out-of-school learning support they need to thrive.

What your gift can do.

A donation today can help stop poverty affecting Liam at school and following him into adulthood.

For over thirty years, The Smith Family has successfully helped large numbers of disadvantaged young Australians and their families engage in their education with long-term and sustained efforts so that they can create a better future for themselves.

Our students can access a range of programs that begin in the early years and continue through to the tertiary level. Students develop the skills, knowledge, attitudes and behaviours they need for long-term educational achievement.

The Smith Family helps.

It’s only Christmas when we share it.

Your donation makes a difference.

It’s only Christmas when we share it.

Just as poverty can be unexpected, so can the support that turns lives around. Please help Liam catch up at school with your generous gift this Christmas.

Your gift will help a child in need feel included in the holiday season.

It’s only Christmas when we share it. Your gift will help a child in need feel included in the holiday season.

Disclaimer: *Liam’s name, location and associated images have been changed to protect his identity.
1 Poverty in Australia, 2018, ACOSS/UNSW Report.
2 Thomson et al, 2011, Challenges for Australian Education: Results from PISA 2009.
3 The Smith Family’s Learning Clubs evaluation report, 2015.