Walter Mikac and the Alannah & Madeline Foundation celebrate 20 year anniversary in Tasmania

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Media Release - Tuesday 30 April, 2017

The Alannah & Madeline 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.

This year the Foundation marks its 20th Anniversary and Walter Mikac, father of Alannah and Madeline, will speak publicly in Tasmania for the first time.

Ms Lesley Podesta, CEO Alannah & Madeline Foundation, said she was thrilled the Foundation was holding events in Tasmania to acknowledge the work being done to build a safer world for children.

“We will never forget the tragedy that led to the creation of the Foundation and we invite all Tasmanians especially survivors, their families; everyone affected by that terrible day to connect with us on this visit,” she said.

In addition to a private function in Hobart on Friday 12 May, Walter Mikac along with Foundation Ambassadors Melissa Doyle AM and ex-AFL player Dan Jackson, invite the public to join them to launch Letters of Love at Fuller’s Bookstore in Hobart on Saturday 13 May.

Walter Mikac, Founding Patron of the Foundation acknowledged the work of the Foundation and the hope that it brings him.

“It is a wonderful testament to the spirit and generosity of Australians that in the wake of such a tragedy 2 million children have been assisted, “he said.

“I am proud of the work that is being done in the name of Alannah and Madeline, to care for Australian children and keep Australia safe.” he said.

This year the Tasmania government announced support of the Foundation’s cyber safety eSmart program across its 180 schools in the state. eSmart also operates in every Tasmanian public library.

To coincide with the anniversary and to assist a new generation of Tasmanians the Foundation is committed to expanding their Buddy Bags program which assists children in emergency accommodation.

The Foundation receives written feedback from parents, carers and children about their experience every day. Miki, whose children have previously received Buddy Bags from the Foundation, said the program had supported her and her young family during an extremely traumatic time.

“My kids still have their teddies that came with their Buddy Bags when we first went to the women's refuge over three years ago,” Miki said. “It's a great incentive to put a smile on children's faces who have had to deal with domestic violence.”

For more information or to request an interview with CEO Lesley Podesta or Founder Walter Mikac, please contact Terri King at Pitch Projects on 0488 036 740 or

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