(03) 9093 7500

Lighthearted July 2017

Lighthouse Foundation eNews

Dear friends

I want to give a huge shout out to our hardworking team who put together the most successful fundraiser in Lighthouse’s history –  #4Up Day.  We were blessed to have many celebrity ambassadors and great companies come on board to support #4UpDay.

Our special thanks go to FOR Studio for all their work on the stunning graphic design, QMS Media for their amazing billboards around Melbourne (thanks Georgie) and to all of our brilliant supporters who gave so generously to help us reach our goal.

I especially acknowledge our new partners who joined our supporters and the general public, to help us reach our targets in less than 8.5 hours – Swimwear Galore, Computers Now, RedZed Lending Solutions and  the Australian Toy Association. Thank you also to our most generous friends, Ralph Todisco and Dessie Kontis, for helping to fund important Bonus Rounds that will enable us to transform even more young people’s lives. My heartfelt thanks go to our private funders who gave us the opportunity to match funds four times and who believed in our dreams from the start – the Victor Smorgon Group, Vicki Vidor OAM and the Vicki Standish Family Foundation.

The community has been right behind us with many new and old friends coming up with creative ways to support our work. Thank you to the wonderful ‘mums and bubs’ committee for their tireless hard work to put on an amazing gala fundraiser at The Grand Hyatt supporting our Young Parents Program, to our growing Schools Program run by Tom Rujis (with the amazing boys from Scotch College raising over $30,000) and to the team at Kids In Philanthropy who will be ‘hanging out’ in August to help Lighthouse. Some of our brave young people have been speaking at schools and events for us too – congratulations to Mia, Aidan and Cherrie.

I’d love to recognise all of the special volunteers and fundraisers who have been supporting our work in so many ways – thank you especially to our beloved reception helper Jo, who recently made the hard decision to return home to the UK. You are missed dearly by our young people and staff.

I was encouraged by the phone calls and generous offers of support after the airing of SBS’s Filthy Rich and Homeless TV series and during our special Instagram booths at Telstra stores across Melbourne. We spoke to many of the people currently experiencing street homelessness who were excited to see the issue being brought to the forefront.

In the homes, our young people are busy back at school or training courses for the Winter term and they are making us proud.

I’m looking forward to sharing our upcoming #StickIt campaign with you during Homelessness Week (7 – 13th August). Our Marketing team and Advisory Board have been working hard to put this campaign together. Please keep an eye out on our social media over the next few weeks to find out more and get involved.

With heart – Susan x






Susan Barton AM


Government House Honours Lighthouse's 25th Anniversary








Recently Lighthouse Foundation recognised 25 years of transforming young lives at a celebration at Government House.

Lighthouse Patron in Chief Judge Anthony Howard QC and Lighthouse Chairman Peter Edwards gave heartfelt speeches recognising the many contributors who have made Lighthouse what it is today.

Mr Howard acknowledged the important work of the Foundation and the growing social and economical issues associated with the cycle of homelessness. He said “Although Melbourne is a beautiful city and has been voted the World’s Most Liveable City for the past six consecutive years, we must work assiduously to ensure that no one is left behind.”

He acknowledged the fact that the Foundation is almost entirely self-funded by its generous circle of donors, supporters and corporate or philanthropic organisations and paid tribute to each and every person who has joined Lighthouse on its journey over the past quarter of a century.

The Lighthouse community wish to thank Her Excellency, the Honourable Linda Dessau, Governor of Victoria, and our Patron in Chief, Mr Anthony Howard, for their hospitality at Government House.

From little things, big things grow, and that is exactly what we have seen happen. We started just with Susan Barton’s own home, and with too many children under her roof, because she couldn’t turn any child away that was out in the cold.

Local businesspeople and philanthropists got behind Susan’s passion to make sure every child had what our own children take for granted – a safe home, trustworthy adults, loving support to complete their education, and a secure base to launch into independent adult life.

We expanded to having our first official Lighthouse home, and began with Terrie Barton as the first paid employee 25 years ago. Gradually the number of homes grew to ten, and remarkably, over the years, over 800 young people came through the program.

Over the years, a unique model of therapeutic care evolved, one that was based originally on Susan’s own parenting instincts, and the understanding that these homeless young people were suffering from severe trauma, which if left untreated, would continue to undermine their efforts to get their lives back on track. This highly regarded Model of Care has seen outstanding positive outcomes for those who come though the Lighthouse program.

Ultimately, it always comes down to courageous and insightful people, who share the Lighthouse mission to end youth homelessness, and are willing to join the fight. You, our most loyal supporters, have been the game changers for Lighthouse and gone above and beyond expectations to, literally, transform lives.

Our community have become heroes for our Lighthouse young people and we thank you.

Here’s to the next 25 years and beyond.


4Up Day Raises $700k to Help 20 New Lighthouse Young People








We are proud to announce our inaugural #4UpDay has raised in excess of $700,000 in less than 24 hours, smashing the target of $576,000.

Thanks to the power of four, celebrity backing and generous donations made by supporters from across Australia, the funds raised will enable Lighthouse to change lives.

All donations made on Wednesday, June 14 were quadrupled, matched four times by private funders of Lighthouse Foundation.

Celebrities who got behind the campaign include Pia Miller, Joel Creasey, Ricki Lee Coulter, Sigrid Thornton, Deborra-Lee Furness, Charlie Pickering, Mick Molloy, Jo Stanley, Bev Brock OAM, Alicia Loxley, Betty Who, Tom Gleisner, DJ Havana Brown, Scherri Lee Biggs, Rebecca Harding, Kyal and Kara Demmrich, Gem Watts, Josh Kennedy, Dan Hannebery, just to name a few.

Lighthouse Founder Susan Barton AM said this is the largest and most successful fundraising appeal in the Foundation’s history.

“Thank you to everyone from the bottom of our hearts here at Lighthouse Foundation who got behind our inaugural 4UP Day and helped it to go viral online, demonstrating there is power in numbers as we tackle the cruel cycle of homelessness.

This campaign will not only bring more attention to the serious issue of youth homelessness facing Melbourne, but it will change the lives of 20 very traumatised young people, children and babies who through no fault of their own have become victims to homelessness.”

Over 1000 calls were made on June 14 by Lighthouse Foundation volunteers to supporters who made donations.

A bonus round was declared at the 12 hour mark, when new corporate partners – Swimwear Galore, Computers Now and Australian Toy Association – pledged further support by donating $80,000. Another Bonus Round was opened thanks to private donors Ralph Todisco and Dessie Kontis who took us to $700,000.

The Foundation provides homeless young people from backgrounds of long-term neglect and abuse, with a home, a sense of family, and around-the-clock therapeutic care that is trauma informed and proven to work.

For over 25 years, Lighthouse has successfully supported over 800 young people to break the cycle of homelessness, move into employment and educational opportunities, and overcome damaging life experiences.

There are over 44,000 young people under the age of 25 homeless in Australia every night. Help Lighthouse to end youth homelessness.

You can still donate via to help more young lives via: donate.lighthousefoundation.org.au.

SBS's Filthy Rich and Homeless TV Series Ignites Conversation








Recently SBS aired an inspiring three part TV series ‘Filthy Rich & Homeless’ where five wealthy Australians swapped their privileged lifestyles for 10 days and nights living on the streets of Melbourne.
The thought provoking and heart-wrenching series drew much-needed attention to the serious issues of homelessness and rough sleeping. The series incited many great and diverse conversations, so from all of us at Lighthouse – thank you SBS.

Australia is in the midst of a homelessness crisis. Across major cities, the number of people without a permanent roof over their heads has risen sharply in recent years. Lighthouse is calling on the support of the community to respond by learning more about our Lighthouse model which aims to end long-term homelessness by addressing the root of the issues for young people who have experienced homelessness.

Take action today and learn more about Lighthouse’s transformative Model of Care by calling (03) 9093 7500 and get involved.


Ro read a statement from the Council to Homeless Persons regarding the SBS series click here.

Telstra Gives H.O.P.E by Saying #44nomore








We were excited to partner with Telstra’s Collins Street and Victoria Gardens stores during June and July to break the cycle of youth homelessness.

Both stores hosted interactive Instagram pop-ups that helped to raise awareness and funds for Lighthouse. Volunteers and Telstra staff spoke to hundreds of people, customers and general public, who shared their support for youth homelessness on social media using the hashtag #44nomore.

Sadly there are 44,000 homeless young people in Australia on any given night – a statistic that shocked Telstra customers and the community. They took to social media to lend their voice in support of Lighthouse’s important programs.

In addition to the launch pop-ups you can also visit Telstra stores during the month of July to get involved. Both the Collins Street and Victoria Gardens Telstra stores will donate $44.00 from every bundle sold to Lighthouse. Anyone who connects to a fixed service including Telstra’s Best Bundle Ever, Foxtel and more from 30 June through July will be helping Lighthouse support more young people in need.

Thank you to all of our amazing volunteers who helped to bring our launch activation to life. 
We especially thank Telstra for encouraging Australians to speak up about the serious issue of youth homelessness and for their incredible partnership and support.

Mums & Bubs Committee Grand Hyatt Gala Raises $23,000








Our fabulous Mums and Bubs Committee held their much-anticipated dinner dance gala at the Grand Hyatt on Saturday 17 June.

Guests were treated to a three course meal, great entertainment including the Baker Boys Band and exciting fundraising activities. Our fabulous Ambassador Alicia Loxley from Channel Nine hosted the evening in style and over $23,000 was raised to support our three dedicated Young Parents Homes.

Thank you to all involved.

Hanging Out For the Homeless in August








This year we are proud partners of Kids In Philanthropy‘s Hangout For The Homeless, a night where kids and families ‘sleep rough’ to help raise vital funds to keep our homes warm this winter.

We’re encouraging all young people and families to host your own ‘Hang Out’ on Saturday 5 August 2017.

This fun initiative will help change young people’s lives at Lighthouse.  Call us on 03 9093 7500 or go to hangoutforthehomeless.org.au to start fundraising today.

Thank You to Those Who Gave So Generously to our Appeal








Our end of financial year appeal has had a tremendous response from you, our community.

Thank you to everyone who responded to our mail and e-appeals. Thank you for digging deep and donating to help our Lighthouse young people achieve their dreams and goals.

We are thrilled to announce that over $68,000 was raised to help more young people like Alex change their lives.

Ngage Technology Group Gala Supports Lighthouse








Recently our friends from NGage Technology Group held their annual Customer Appreciation Gala at Crown Casino making Lighthouse the charity beneficiary and donating over $4,000 as well printing and mobile technology to Lighthouse.

Our brave young person Mia spoke to the crowd of 150+ guests alongside comedian and Lighthouse friend Doug Chappel.

Thank you Ngage for this wonderful donation.