Today, focus is on the state of education in Australia with the launch of National Literacy and Numeracy Week, and Adam Goodes’ new partnership with the Australian Literacy & Numeracy Foundation (ALNF). Goodes has thrown his support behind the foundation as both Ambassador and Board Member, with a drive and passion to make literacy and education a reality for all Australian children. He states, “I am looking forward to working with the team at ALNF. I have seen first-hand how the foundation works and I am looking forward to empowering more community members to help educate their nieces, nephews and children, now and for future generations.”

ALNF Co-Founder and Executive Director, Kim Kelly, is thrilled to have the support of such an eminent Australian, and hopes that Goodes’ involvement will shine a light on the persistent literacy gap that exists, particularly between Indigenous and non-Indigenous youth. “It is unacceptable that Indigenous children and children from low- socioeconomic backgrounds are continually left behind when it comes to literacy. Being able to read and write is a basic human right, and a key factor in future health, wellbeing and economic stability.”

Together, Adam Goodes and ALNF will continue to work on the ground transforming disadvantaged communities, but more needs to be done to urgently change the national literacy landscape:

• Only 1 out of 5 Indigenous children living in very remote NT communities are able to read at the national minimum standard (NAPLAN, 2016).

• Students from poor families are five times more likely than their wealthier classmates to perform poorly at school (OECD, 2016).

• 1 in 3 Australians have literacy skills low enough to make them vulnerable to unemployment and social exclusion (OECD, 2013).

ALNF has specialised literacy programs to overcome the many health, developmental and social hurdles faced by vulnerable children. ALNF’s programs make education engaging, giving teachers, parents and community members the tools they need to break the cycle of transgenerational illiteracy.

We believe that literacy is freedom- literacy allows individuals to access education, participate meaningfully in our society and to have a voice. It is a basic human right.

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