Helping First Nations girls and young women achieve their full potential in all areas of their lives is what drives the programs and services of the Stars Foundation. With over 2,900 students in more than 50 primary and secondary schools across Australia involved with mentoring and support, it is changing lives. Attendance rates at school are up as are the number of students successfully completing Year 12 and moving into work and further study.
Project: Stars Foundation
Encouraging First Nation girls and young women between 8 and 20 years to recognise their strengths, focus and collaborate are pillars of the Stars Foundation programs. With over 40,000 First Nations girls facing barriers to their education, Stars seeks to change this with over 50 programs and services that provide practical and targeted support across all areas of their lives.
Enabling First Nation girls to achieve requires intensive wraparound services. For the 2,900 students currently participating in their programs, support is provided with education, training and employment; maintaining a healthy lifestyle and overall wellbeing; and connecting with community, culture and developing leadership skills. Students meet at a dedicated Stars room within their school and are matched to mentors.
Providing these inclusive services is delivering results. In 2022 91% of senior Stars completed Year 12, higher than the total number of all non-Indigenous people completing Year 12, 88.5%. School attendance across all ages is higher, 80% average for Stars students compared to 68% for all Indigenous students at their partner schools. School to work and/or further study is also far higher than national averages. And for the next generation, the 700 Stars Foundation Alumni provide a leadership, motivation and support.
A 2022 Stars Year 12 graduate from the Northern Territory said “having the belief and support from Stars helped me to believe in myself more … we all had a safe place to go, got help when we needed it, advice and had experiences that were unimaginable to me as I had always felt underestimated. They see the best in us”. Western Australian 2022 Year 12 Stars graduate said “Stars helped me achieve my Western Australia Certificate of Education and the Transition Manager has been checking in and supporting me to get employment, I feel part of the Stars family”.
For The Phillips Foundation (TPF) providing the practical support to Stars Foundation enables current program participants to be supported to realise their potential and ensure the support exists for future participants.