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Susanne’s a champion for disadvantaged students

Susanne had dedicated her life to looking after others. After she retired from nursing, she wanted to continue helping those in need. When Susanne heard how our work supports disadvantaged Australian students with their education, she decided to begin making monthly donations to The Smith Family - becoming a ‘Champion’ for children in need.

"I think investing in our young people is the most important thing that we, as a community, can do. I have a large family with four sons and nine grandchildren. I feel I have an affinity with kids. [The Smith Family] just struck a chord with me,” said Susanne.

Susanne's regular donations ensure students get the extra program support they need to break the cycle of disadvantage.

Susanne, supporter and volunteer
Smith Family Champion Susanne enjoys seeing the impact of her support first-hand

It is a little investment for this country's future, and a way to make a difference to some kids that don't have the same chances as others.

"I was very comfortable with the premise of where our donations are going, so I guess that was the driving force [behind my decision],” she said.

Susanne was also looking for something meaningful to do in her free time. She felt that becoming a Learning Club volunteer tutor would help her better see the difference her donations were making. Often disadvantaged children don’t have a quiet place at home to concentrate, and their parents might not be able to help them with their homework. Learning Clubs provide safe and supportive out-of-school learning environments for students in need.

"I felt that the Learning Club was something that I would enjoy, while helping the kids. It is a win-win situation. Some kids may know nothing other than what they have [experienced]. I thought that with the little bit of time I can spend with them, I can show them a different role model,” said Susanne.

"In the first week I worked with a little girl. When I went back the second week, she came over to me straight away. I thought, 'Aw, that's lovely.' I felt that we'd built up a rapport. In these moments I get a kick out of being a volunteer and hopefully I pass that on to the kids to motivate them.”

After seeing the impact of her support first-hand, Susanne feels confident that her donations and support are helping to transform lives.

"It is a little investment for this country's future, and a way to make a difference to some kids that don't have the same chances as others,” she said.

Each year our work is made possible by the support of over 8,700 volunteers. We were delighted to celebrate our wonderful volunteers during National Volunteer Week this May.

Thank you Susanne – and to all of our donors and volunteers for making our work possible.

Hear from more of our supporters.

Susanne supporter and volunteer
Susanne volunteers at her local Learning Club

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