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About Us

Make Life Better

What We Do

Hello! We're Australia’s leading Young Carer organisation, supporting young people who provide unpaid care for a family member affected by disability, chronic or mental illness, substance use or frail age, in VIC, NSW and QLD. Since our launch in 2009, we've become a game changing force in the Young Carer space, developing internationally recognised best practice programs and changing the lives of thousands of Young Carers around Australia.

Across a range of direct support programs, both in-person and online, we're working to improve the quality of life of Young Carers across five key areas of risk: education, employment, mental and physical health, social wellbeing and financial literacy.

A young Maddy and her Co-Founder, Bec, sit proudly in front of a bright blue Little Dreamers poster the is pinned to the wall. The poster features our original Little Dreamers logo (a fairy silhouette holding a wand) and a collage of photos that are too small to decipher. Maddy wears a red beanie and a striped white off the shoulder top, and Bec on the right has long light brown hair and a fringe, with a light grey and pink t-shirt.

Our Story

Our story began when our Founder and CEO was just nine years old and asked the very question that still drives us today, “who cares for the carers?”

Maddy grew up caring for her younger brother, who had a range of chronic illnesses, and her mother, who was diagnosed with breast cancer. At nine years of age, she identified a gap in the support system for Young Carers and began to raise awareness through fundraising events and stalls.

Over a decade later and with more than 6,500 young people reached nationwide, Little Dreamers is Australia’s leading Young Carer organisation. Across a range of key support programs co-designed with young people in caring roles, we’re breaking down barriers and empowering youth, with a vision to ensure that every Young Carer around the world is supported by someone or something by the year 2030.

Watch our Documentary
About Us

Young Carers

A Young Carer is someone aged 25 or under who provides care for a family member affected by disability, chronic or mental illness, addiction, or frail age.

We know from experience that being a carer can be an amazing thing. Young Carers often learn compassion, kindness and empathy from having a caring role, and develop an incredible bond with the person they care for. But being a Young Carer can also significantly impact on one’s education, social life, employment and mental and physical health. That’s where we come in!

Did you know?

  • It’s estimated that 1 in 10 young people in Australia are carers
  • Young Carers are twice as likely to be disengaged from work or study than their peers
  • Carers have higher rates of poverty than non carers
  • 2 in 3 Young Carers experience mental health challenges
More statistics

Our Team

Maddy's Headshot
Maddy

Founder and CEO

Erin's Headshot
Erin

People and Culture Manager

Sammy's Headshot
Sammy

Marketing and Communications Manager

Laura's Headshot
Laura

Head of Programs

Tasha's Headshot
Tasha

Family Support Manager

Lindsay's Headshot
Lindsay

Executive Manager (Carer Gateway)

Natalie's Headshot
Natalie

National Branding and Communications Manager

Jade's Headshot
Jade

Dream Experience Coordinator

Olivia's Headshot
Olivia

Volunteer Coordinator

Sasha's Headshot
Sasha

Program Lead (VIC)

Lisa's Headshot
Lisa

Program Lead (VIC)

Clara's Headshot
Clara

Regional Program Lead (Lismore)

Amber's Headshot
Amber

Young Carer Engagement Lead

Melanie's Headshot
Melanie

Young Carer Engagement Coordinator

Monika's Headshot
Monika

Family Support Worker (VIC)

Amy's Headshot
Amy

Peer Support Practice Lead

Janine's Headshot
Janine

Young Carer Support Coordinator (Peer Support) Sydney

Brooke's Headshot
Brooke

Young Carer Support Coordinator (Peer Support) Brisbane

Dee's Headshot
Dee

Young Carer Support Coordinator (Peer Support) Bundaberg

Kathryn's Headshot
Kathryn

Young Carer Support Coordinator (Peer Support) Bundaberg

Chantell's Headshot
Chantell

Young Carer Support Coordinator (Peer Support) Toowoomba

Tahnee's Headshot
Tahnee

Coaching Practice Lead

Rachel's Headshot
Rachel

Quality and Compliance Lead

Richard's Headshot
Richard

Counselling Practice Lead

Beck's Headshot
Beck

Young Carer Support Coordinator (Coaching) Brisbane

Kit's Headshot
Kit

Young Carer Support Coordinator (Coaching) Toowoomba

Christina's Headshot
Christina

Young Carer Support Coordinator (Coaching) Bundaberg

Ashleigh's Headshot
Ashleigh

Young Carer Support Coordinator (Coaching) NSW

Melita's Headshot
Melita

Community Engagement Coordinator (QLD)

Elizabeth's Headshot
Elizabeth

Community Engagement Coordinator (NSW)

Daisy's Headshot
Daisy

Chief Barketing Officer

Our Board

Tom Levi GAICD: Chair's Headshot
Tom Levi GAICD: Chair

Principal at Nous Group

Michael Gilbert: Treasurer's Headshot
Michael Gilbert: Treasurer

Senior Finance Business Partner at Australia Post

Dana Rochwerger's Headshot
Dana Rochwerger

Co-Founder at Not a Pony, Head of Digital and Funday Sweets

Rosie Thomas OAM's Headshot
Rosie Thomas OAM

Co-Founder of PROJECT ROCKIT

Darren Lomman's Headshot
Darren Lomman

Business Owner

Esther Nelson's Headshot
Esther Nelson

Legal Counsel

Our Ambassadors

Elise Pulbrook's Headshot
Elise Pulbrook

Dena Kaplan's Headshot
Dena Kaplan

Ariel Kaplan's Headshot
Ariel Kaplan

Gemma-Ashley Kaplan's Headshot
Gemma-Ashley Kaplan

Little Dreamers Australia

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Our Advocates

Little Dreamers

"Young Carers are some of the most resourceful and resilient people around. Heavy responsibilities rest on their shoulders and they face and overcome challenges, often daily, that most adults would struggle to solve. We should champion all children and young people in caring roles, recognise their talent and support them to have the choices and freedom that the rest of us take for granted."

Little Dreamers

"There is an emerging consensus that around 10% of children and young people are Young Carers. They are involved in various caring roles for an ill or disabled relative/parent in their family, such as showering them, helping them to the toilet, keeping an eye on them, etc. These children represent a hidden army of young people who are also family carers. They will be on your street, in your community, in your schools . . . . can you see them yet?"

Little Dreamers

"If you’re a young adult caregiver, I implore you to share your story. Make yourself known. This may mean opening up to a friend, forming an online peer support group, or meeting with your state representative. Whatever you do, however seemingly big or small, is incredibly important in ensuring that the world knows that you serve an invaluable role as a young adult caregiver. Your acts of sacrifice are courageous and inspiring, particularly in a society that increasingly argues that today’s millennials are selfish and narcissistic. You are irreplaceable. You matter."

👋 Join us in extending a warm welcome to Clara, our new NSW Regional Program Lead at Little Dreamers!

In three words, Clara describes herself as positive, caring and creative. Outside of work, you`ll find her surfing, hiking, running, and practising pilates! She also makes the effort to wake up early every morning to catch the sunrise for a daily dose of inspiration. 🌞

She’s very excited to be part of the Dream Team and can`t wait to connect with all the incredible Young Carers. Clara is gearing up to launch exciting programs in Northern NSW, so stay tuned for more updates! 👀
...

Check out the video recap of our Young Carers Festival VIC, which took place in National Carers Week 2023 🥳✨

Hosted at @goclimbofficial, the event featured exhilarating jumps, slides, rock climbing, face painting, a caricaturist, superheroes and more!

A big thank you to the Inner North Foundation and the Barr Family Foundation for their generous support in making this event possible, and a special shoutout to @milk.video.au for crafting this amazing video!

We are SO excited to announce that our Young Carers Festival will be running later in the year in both VIC and QLD - stay tuned for more details 👀
...

Our 22/23 Annual Report has just landed!

Read all about our past financial year and the pretty special milestones we`ve achieved together, including:
⭐ Welcoming a whopping 1,287 new applications for support
⭐ Increasing our revenue by 30%
⭐ Reaching an astounding 10,000+ engagements in our support programs!

Head to the link below to explore the full report 🚀✨ bit.ly/littledreamers-23impact
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Hey there 👋

We wanted to take some time to tell you all about our new programs for Young Carers in Hunter Port Stephens and North Coast NSW.

Thanks to our friends at the NSW Office for Regional Youth, we`re delivering programs to new areas in regional New South Wales, and we couldn`t be more excited about it 🤩

Young Carers in these regions will be able to access:
⭐ School Holiday Programs - coming up quick in April!
⭐ Empower Hour (from Term 2)
⭐ Online Tutoring (from Term 2)

We`ll be sharing further information over the next few weeks, but in the meantime, you can also read more on our website!

Apply for support today to access our programs: www.littledreamers.org.au/applyforsupport/
...

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