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David and The Big Heavy

David and the big heavy

David & The Big Heavy

For David, growing up in poverty meant living with heavy burdens that no child should have to carry.

David and the Big Heavy

David and the Big Heavy

David’s true story shows the struggles and loneliness that many disadvantaged children face.

For David, growing up in poverty meant living with heavy burdens that no child should have to carry. As David’s mum struggled to feed their family, David did everything he could to help. He got a job bring in extra money – but that left him no time for his school work, so he began to fall behind. 

As his grades fell, so did his self-confidence, and his burden felt heavier and heavier. Worst of all, he had no friends at all to help him carry it. He was so lonely he felt like giving up.

By making a gift or becoming a child sponsor today, you can help lift the burden for children like David, and give them the chance they deserve to fulfil their potential.

Right now, Australian children are living in poverty

Not all children get an equal start in life. David is just one of the one in six Australian children living in disadvantage today – children who urgently need your support.

Some families have experienced many generations of disadvantage. For others, a more recent change in health, employment or family relationships has affected them so badly that they are no longer able to meet the daily costs of living.

With limited financial resources, the day to day life of a family changes significantly. If the parents are working, they are more likely to be working irregular hours or travelling long distances for work.

This puts pressure on other family members, including children, to keep the household running. Teenagers like David may have to work to supplement the family income, leaving them little or no time to study – and no one there to help them if they’re struggling with school work.

With so much focus on just ‘getting by’, many of these kids don’t have something as simple as a school bag, a complete uniform or the schoolbooks they need to make the most of their education. School excursions and activities are an impossible luxury. They are often teased or left out by other students because they don’t ‘fit in’.

You can help change all that, by sponsoring a child today.

The impact of disadvantage on learning

One in Six: David's family looking at empty fridge

From the moment they are born, there’s an increased risk of disadvantaged children like David falling through the cracks. They often miss out on early learning experiences and opportunities that other children receive.

When they start school, they’re already behind. One in three children from Australia’s most disadvantaged communities do not meet one or more key developmental milestones when they start school.1

Without the learning skills and support they need, they struggle to keep up. As the gap between them and their classmates widens their confidence erodes and their self-esteem crumbles. As it did for David, this can leave them feeling crushed and overwhelmed by the lonely burdens they have to carry.

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

These children need your help right now.

If we don't intervene in time, they can fall so far behind at school they give up trying – shut themselves off from their class mates, stop participating in class, or even give up on going to school altogether. This can set up a pattern of underachievement that can last the rest of their lives.

Research shows Year 12 completion rates are significantly lower (68%) for students from disadvantaged backgrounds than for students from more advantaged backgrounds (79%).Young people from advantaged backgrounds are three times more likely to attend university than students from vulnerable backgrounds.5

I felt like giving up. But then some people we had never even met decided to help us. It changed everything. 


Please help a child like David

Your support can change the life of a child like David, by providing them with the extra out-of-school support they need to catch up and keep up at school.

Please will you make a gift today to give a child access to a range of out-of-school learning and mentoring programs that begin in the early years and continue through to high school and tertiary education.

Or become a sponsor and give a child life-changing, comprehensive support so they can finally fit in and get the most out of their schooling.

With you behind them, students like David can develop the skills, knowledge and confidence they need for long-term educational achievement, and better opportunities for further study and employment.

Please empower young Australians to lift themselves out of poverty and onto a better path – breaking the cycle of disadvantage, one child at a time.

Generous sponsors like you lifted David’s heavy burdens. For just $52 per month you can give a child like David the support they need to fulfil their potential.

About Tales of the One in Six

Tales of the One in Six

Tales of the ‘One In Six’ is an animated web series based on the real stories of Australian children from disadvantaged backgrounds, who struggle daily with the effects of financial hardship.

The stories are drawn from the challenging but inspiring stories of children who have overcome adversity, thanks to the generosity of people like you.

Using a simple animated style, together with elements of traditional fairy tales, these short films will draw you into the inner world of these children to reveal their stories of hardship and transformation.

Tales of the One in Six

1Australian Government (2016) Australian Early Development Census National Report, 2015: A snapshot of early childhood development in Australian, DET: Canberra.
2Thomson et al, 2011, Challenges for Australian Education: Results from PISA 2009.
3Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority 2012. National Report on Schooling in Australia 2010: Additional statistics.
4Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations, 2008, Review of Australian Higher Education Final Report.

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