will you help
keep me safe?
No child should ever
suffer like Elliot* did.


Show abused children like Elliot that there are people he can depend on.

$208,381 raised so far!
Goal: $250,000
Mark from Miranda, NSW has just donated $50

Elliot was burned, beaten and starved by his family.

He learnt in his short, brutal life that the people he loved would only hurt or ignore him.

Make a tax-deductible donation by June 30 and help children like Elliot have a brighter future.

There are more than 1,200 reports of child abuse and neglect in Australia every day.^

^Australian Institute of Health and Welfare, Child Protection 2018/19

We will never know the full extent of what Elliot endured in the first six years of his life. We have only the shocking picture we can piece together from a traumatised child’s scattered memories.

Children like Elliot who have lived through violence and neglect urgently need both immediate care and ongoing support to keep them safe from the devastating effects of trauma.

Over time they are likely to develop urgent needs – both physical and emotional – and it’s only with support from people like you that they can get the help they so desperately need.


No child should ever have to go through the pain and suffering that Elliot went through.
Elliot’s Story:

Elliot had a very tough start to life. As a terrified little boy, he would throw himself between his parents as they screamed, kicked and punched each other in drug-fuelled rages.

Suffering agonising injuries, he had no medical care and no one to comfort him as he cried. For hours he would be left alone in an empty house, with nothing to eat but mouldy scraps and dog biscuits. It was only when he started school that an alarm was raised. After several unexplained absences, Elliot arrived one morning with a bandage hiding an excruciating third-degree burn on his arm, which he said happened when his dad held his arm against a blistering heater.

Elliot’s school called government child protection authorities, who found signs that Elliot’s arm had been broken at least once, and discovered he was covered in bruises and hidden scars from many vicious beatings.

Elliot was immediately taken into our care – and Barnardos caseworker Gabi* vividly remembers working with him:

“We brought Elliot into the centre before taking him to his emergency foster home. He was very thin and extremely hungry, so we gave him some afternoon tea. He just looked at the food and asked why it wasn’t green. I remember my horror when it dawned on me, he was used to eating food covered with mould.”

Elliot was placed with Barnardos foster carers where he could finally get the nurturing care every child needs. As he works with his psychologist and therapists, he’s piecing everything together and realising that no child should ever have to suffer the way he did.

“It’s been absolutely heartbreaking to see Elliot realise that the mum he loves cannot keep him safe. He’s going to need a huge amount of help to manage his anger and grief as he grows up and comes to understand more deeply what has happened to him.”

Elliot’s parents can’t keep him safe – but you can keep him safe from the devastating effects of trauma. Children who have experienced family violence and neglect are at high risk of developing debilitating mental health issues such as PTSD, OCD and depression1, and Elliot is already struggling with extreme, overwhelming emotions.

Elliot has been diagnosed with OCD. He obsessively cleans until his fingers start to bleed. This compulsive behaviour is especially worrying, as we know from experience that this need for control can develop into self-harm. He needs support to keep him safe from the effects of abuse and neglect.

1. Effects of child abuse and neglect for adult survivors. CFCA Resource Sheet 2014.


“We used art therapy to help Elliot express how he felt and he drew us his ‘house of dreams’. It’s heartbreaking that every one of Elliot’s ‘dreams’ was something that every child should be able to take for granted.”
Your tax-deductible gift by 30 June will help give children like Elliot who have lived through appalling abuse and neglect the care, protection and support they need right now and into the future.
You can protect Australian children from abuse



could help provide new clothes and essential daily items for children who have been neglected and never had the chance to own these items.



could go towards occupational and speech therapy for children who are developmentally delayed due to the effects of abuse or neglect.



could allow children like Elliot to receive support and therapy sessions to help them overcome the trauma of an abusive past.



could help provide urgent medical attention or rehabilitation sessions for physical injuries sustained as a result of abuse.

“Thank you for helping keep me safe.” - Elliot
About Barnardos Australia

Barnardos Australia is a leading non-government child protection charity committed to breaking the cycle of child abuse. We offer a range of family support programs and services to ensure all children and young people have caring families in which they can grow safely and fulfil their potential. When this is not possible, we also provide safe homes for children through foster care, kinship care and open adoption.

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