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Some of the stories shared by out-of-home care recipients for World Care Day (MacKillop Family Services)

Today, on World Care Day, MacKillop Family Services is encouraging people to deepen their understanding of children in out-of-home care and celebrate the outcomes they achieve despite a challenging start to their lives.

“You never grow out of being in foster care,” says a 28-year-old woman who spent most of her teenage years in foster and residential care. A decade later and now living in a home she has purchased, she continues to experience stigma due to her experience of living in the care system as a child.

World Care Day is the world’s largest celebration of young people with a care experience. 

MacKillop’s World Care Day campaign gives a voice to young people with a care experience by enabling them to share their stories, so people in the community can see life in care through a different lens.

There are 45,400 Australian children and young people in out-of-home care. 

MacKillop’s chief executive Robyn Miller sees first-hand how young people in care face judgment and discrimination, which impacts their wellbeing and future prospects.

“Nationally, MacKillop looks after more than 3000 children and young people in residential and foster care each year. We know every one of them is dealing with the trauma of leaving their family. They also face barriers to staying at their regular school and keeping in touch with school friends; keeping connected to their sporting team or dance class; and they often lack family support to fall back on,” Ms Miller said.

“What inspires me on a daily basis is the extraordinary courage and resilience of these young people, who often go on to post-secondary education, trade apprenticeships, become community leaders and create their own safe and nurturing families.

“We want to address the stigma these young people sometimes face. We know that growing up in care does not make children ‘less than’ their peers and should not pre-determine a future with lesser outcomes.”


Celebrating the achievements of young people who grew up in foster care for World Care Day (MacKillop Family Services)