Author(s): Alannah & Madeline Foundation
The Port Arthur massacre was one of the darkest days in Australian history. But the response, an unprecedented outpouring of love and compassion, also brought out the best in Australians. One year after that tragedy, Walter Mikac launched the Alannah and Madeline Foundation, in honour of his two young daughters who died alongside their mother on that terrible day. Since then, the Foundation has helped tens of thousands of vulnerable youth feel safe and secure from violence.
On its 20th anniversary, the Alannah and Madeline Foundation will publish Letters of Love, aimed at sending love back into the community again. More than 60 celebrities and public figures have written letters about love in all its shapes and sizes – from romance and plutonic love, to familial love, devotion to nature, and as a celebration of positivity.
The book begins with a letter 6-year-old Alannah wrote to Walter weeks before the tragedy, and ends with a letter Walter has written to his daughter from a new relationship. It’s a beautiful book that harnesses the best in all of us, and is once more testament to the power of the human spirit.
Rex Hunt, Steve Vizard, Neil Mitchell, Ron Barassi, Bob Brown, Melissa Doyle, Layne Beachley, Gina Liano, Chrissy Swan, Michael Kirby, Danni Minogue, Jimmy Barnes, Cadel Evans, Andrew O’Keefe, Cameron Daddo, Steve Bradbury
The Foundation was set up in memory of Alannah and Madeline Mikac, aged six and three, who were tragically killed with their mother and 32 others at Port Arthur, Tasmania, on 28 April 1996. The Foundation was launched in 1997 and has been operating for almost 20 years. Their key objectives are to care for children who have experienced or witnessed serious violence; reduce the incidence of bullying, cyber bullying and other cyber risks; and, advocate for the safety and wellbeing of children.