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FEDERAL BUDGET: Australian Government must focus on local and global crises affecting children

Save the Children calls for Federal Budget to build, respond and invest in the future of children.
13 May 2024

In the face of climate change and related environmental crises, an increasingly volatile world order and the cost-of-living crisis, Save the Children Australia is calling on the Federal Government to prioritise the future of children across the country and the world in this year's budget.

The international child rights charity is calling for the 2024-25 Federal Budget to urgently allocate lifesaving funds to:

  1. Help build community resilience to the impacts of climate change to fulfil children's rights to a healthy, safe and prosperous future. Specifically, Save the Children is calling for Australia to increase its climate finance commitments by $500 million, including $100 million to the Loss and Damage Fund established at COP28.

  2. The vast and dire humanitarian needs of children stemming from devastating global crises in places such as Gaza, Yemen, Ukraine and Sudan. Save the Children is calling for a significant increase in humanitarian funding, including doubling of the Humanitarian Emergency Fund to $300 million annually, to urgently address sudden onset disasters and the devastating consequences of conflict.

  3. Invest in the Pacific region through $65 million over three years to strengthen education outcomes for girls in Fiji, Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands, Tonga and Vanuatu and a further $65 million over three years to reduce the high rates of violence, including sexual violence, against children.

Save the Children Australia CEO Mat Tinkler said that without prioritising the health, wellbeing and livelihoods of our future generations now, many other government investments will, in time, prove to be in vain.

“We’re at a point in time where both the domestic and global situation for children is extremely challenging. The escalating climate emergency, poverty and the cost-of-living crisis, and devastating global conflicts are making it a very difficult time to be a child,” he said.

“But times of hardship also provide us with the greatest opportunity to make positive change. Save the Children is strongly urging policymakers to consider a few realistic budget allocations that would go a long way to improving children’s lives, both here at home and overseas.

“For example, in Australia, 95 percent of students who participate in Save the Children’s Hands on Learning program finish school, get an apprenticeship or get a job. With a recommended investment of $16.6 million over 4 years, this evidence-based program could be offered in a further 380 schools. Imagine what a tangible difference that could make for our country's future?

“In our region, investments in social infrastructure such as health, education and child protection are critical to ensuring peace, stability and prosperity. Funding to build climate resilience, reduce violence against children and improve educational outcomes for girls are just some of the important steps Australia could take to support children in the Pacific.

“It's an uncertain time to be a child but – with the right leadership – decisions now have the power to change the circumstances for so many. Without an overarching focus on what’s best for children, other investments are not built on solid foundations. We urge politicians and policymakers to act in the very best interests of our future generations.”


MEDIA CONTACT:  Mala Darmadi on 0425562113 or
Notes to Editors:

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