A message from our Chair, Michael Hardy

What the Tara Costigan Foundation has been able to achieve in such a short timeframe is quite extraordinary and it is thanks to the goodwill of our supporters, big and small.

Even the kind words, the "good on you", comments help everyone involved to continue to have the courage and inspiration to take the next step. We need to be able to take the next step as a Foundation so that we can help others who have faced family violence take their own important next steps.

One next step for the Foundation was to attract a Patron and I'm very pleased that David Morrison, Australian of the Year, has agreed to be the Patron for the Tara Costigan Foundation. As many of you know, David has been a strong advocate of equality for many years and his firms words about the behaviour that would not be tolerated when he was Chief of the Army went viral. Even before David became our Patron, he spoke of the Tara Costigan Foundation on national television.

David Morrison with Tara's grandmother

Our young Foundation organised and was the driving force of the National Family Violence Summit held in March. This was a great example of how we work with others to achieve great things. We have seen themes from the summit echoed in the communique from the recent Council of Australian Governments (COAG) meeting. At the national big picture level, everyone is starting to draw the same picture about a national response to family violence.

While the Foundation has been involved in the big picture thinking, we are still conscious that we need to deliver important outcomes for real people. We remain dedicated to the work of providing case workers, Tara's Angels, that can spend up to two years working with survivors of domestic violence. Tara's Angels will help survivors of family violence navigate the support options available, and help the survivors take their own next steps to a more secure and certain future. We hope to have our first Angel operating later this year.

Much of this early activity has been driven by the momentum of Michael Costigan, our Chief Executive and Nadia Pessarossi, our new Head of Marketing, Fundraising and Events as well as the enthusiastic support of the many family and friends that banded around the Costigan family in the immediate aftermath of Tara's death. As Michael Costigan noted in his address to the National Summit, a champion team can achieve more than a team of champions, so we have started to build a champion team. The champion team includes our Patron, new members of our Board and all of our members and supporters. In future newsletters there will insights about how the team is coming together.

Finally, and most importantly, thank you to all of you for your ongoing support. On behalf of the Board, we will try to justify your faith in the objectives of the Foundation and work towards better outcomes for people exposed to family violence.


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