No child should have to experience the harm of homelessness

A year ago, Jenny’s* dad lost his job. This was a devastating blow, and it forced the family out of their home and into a tiny, two-bedroom unit with Jenny’s aunties and two extra kids.

Noise. Overcrowding. Constant stress. Being at home was unbearable for Jenny. So, when tempers flared and arguments broke out – Jenny decided to leave, and sleep on a friend-of-a-friend’s couch…

Within weeks, she was sexually assaulted.

No child should ever have to face the dangers, harms and trauma of being homeless. But sadly, there are thousands of children, like Jenny, who are homeless across our country.

Please, donate today to help protect children like Jenny from the devastating harms caused by homelessness.

When children like Jenny become homeless, they are often exposed to hard drugs and criminal behaviour, and are at significantly greater risk of sexual and physical assault. They leave behind family, good friends and are much more likely to drop out of school…

It was obvious, from the first moment we saw her, that Jenny needed help. Fast.

It was one of our highly trained caseworkers, Chantelle, who first met Jenny at a local park where she was hanging out with a group of other youths who looked much older than her. And Chantelle said, “That worried me a lot.

Jenny had dark shadows under her eyes, and she was incredibly pale. Her hands were shaking, from nerves I think, and at the first sign of kindness she burst into tears. I knew something was deeply wrong.

She kept saying over and over, ‘I can’t go back, I can’t go back.’”

Thankfully, Chantelle was able to get Jenny into a safe refuge and stay with her until she felt safe.

But Jenny needs more help. She urgently needs physical and mental health support, as well as trauma counselling. Not only that, she has missed months of school and has lost touch with her friends, peers and family.

Please, donate today so that your kind gift can help provide a homeless, traumatised child like Jenny with the wraparound care and support they need to be safe, heal, and get their dreams back on track.


strip Jenny's case is not unusual...

During this time of economic hardship, far too many of Australia's young people are running away from unsafe and challenging home situations into a profoundly dangerous one: homelessness.


young people aged 12-18 were homeless on census night 2021. 1


1 in 6 girls
1 in 9 boys

are physically and/or sexually abused before the age of 15. 2


50% of care leavers
within one year of exiting out-of-home care will be unemployed, in jail, homeless or become a new parent. 3

strip How your donation helps

By donating today you are investing in three powerful ways of protecting children experiencing or at risk of homelessness:


You’ll fund Barnardos youth outreach teams to prevent youth homelessness before it begins, by identifying at-risk youths, liaising with their families, and helping them remain connected to school, friends and home.


You’ll help a dedicated Barnardos caseworker connect a young person like Jenny with emergency accommodation, trauma counselling and essential life skills support while they’re away from home.


You’ll help a Barnardos mediator to reach out to the family of a young person who is homeless, and if it is safe to do so, help them reconnect, heal old wounds, and build a framework that allows the young person to return home safely.


1. Australian Bureau of Statistics – Census 2021 2. AIHW-Health impacts of family, domestic and sexual violence 2020 3. Office of the Children’s Guardian (OCG) 2020-2021
*Models used and names changed to protect privacy.


No 14-year-old should be living on the streets - you can help girls like Jenny find safety and chase their dreams

Up Donate Now