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CharitiesAidWelfare, Medical Health Aged Care

Life-saving surgery made possible for some of the world’s sickest kids.

Ronald McDonald House Charities Victoria & Tasmania & Children First Foundation 3 mins read
Malik pointing out Timor Leste on the globe

Children from developing countries unable to access critical and complex surgery at home, are getting treated and staying with their families in a home-away-from-home in Melbourne.

Children First Foundation facilitates life changing and often life-saving surgery in Australia when a child’s home country is not equipped to provide the complex care the child needs.

Now Children First has joined in partnership with long-standing provider of accommodation and support for families with critically ill children, Ronald McDonald House Charities Victoria & Tasmania (RMHC VIC & TAS) to complete the circle of care.

When Children First flies a child and their parent or guardian to Australia for surgery in a Melbourne hospital, RMHC VIC & TAS provide the safety and comfort of a supportive place to stay until they can go back home.

Together, RMHC VIC & TAS and Children First will work closely to offer families holistic support to families facing medical crises can focus on what matters most – their child's recovery.

"RMHC VIC & TAS are proud to partner with Children First Foundation to offer the accommodation and support for families who have come all the way over to Australia for treatment”, said Peter Bishop, CEO of RMHC VIC & TAS.

"Being able to keep families together and comfortable when their lives have been turned upside down, is at the heart of what we’re here to do.”

Children First Foundation CEO Jessica Redwood agrees. “Children First couldn't transform the lives of children without the support of our partners and we are proud be working with RMHC Vic & Tas. Having a well-established accommodation provider with a proven track record of excellence, child-safety and care is critical to us as we look to new and better ways of doing things to support more children from developing countries to access essential surgical care when they need it most.”

This partnership marks a significant step forward in the shared mission of both organisations to make a positive impact on the lives of disadvantaged children and their families. By leveraging their respective expertise and resources, RMHC VIC & TAS and Children First are poised to create a stronger, more supportive community for families facing medical crises.

One family who has benefitted from the partnership already is 7-year Malik from Timor Leste. Malik arrived in Australia four months ago for life-changing surgery to fix degenerate growth plates in his knee. He and his mum Sonia are so grateful for being accommodated at Ronald McDonald House Charities in North Fitzroy. Thanks to this surgery he will now be able to walk fully, pain free for the first time. With his dream of becoming a pilot winging ever closer, Malik has just had his third and final surgery to remove the metal brace that is straightening his leg and will shortly return home to a bright future ahead of him.


More information RMHC VICTAS : VICTAS Fundraise Landing Page and Home (

About us:

About Ronald McDonald House Charities Victoria & Tasmania: Ronald McDonald House Charities Victoria & Tasmania supports families by providing a 'home away from home' while their child undergoes treatment for serious illness and injury at nearby hospitals. RMHC VIC & TAS keeps families together and close to their child receiving treatment in hospital, easing the burden on families by providing accommodation, care, and support during difficult times.

About Children First Foundation: Children First Foundation facilitates life-changing and life-saving surgical care for children from developing countries here in Australia and overseas. Through the Miracle sMiles program, Children First partners with world-class hospitals, highly skilled surgeons and medical professionals to bring children to Australia for complex surgery when it is unavailable in their  home country. The Children First team works extensively with parents/guardians pre-surgery, during the surgical journey and post-surgery to support children's physiotherapy, wound management and dressings, medication administration and rehabilitation. In addition to supporting children's physical needs, Children First are committed to providing holistic care, responding to each child’s emotional, and cultural needs, and helping them build their confidence and independence throughout their surgical journey and providing follow-up support through to adulthood.

Contact details:


Nicole Roberts

0402 033326


Children First Foundation:

Tracey Volkmer

0455 112 075



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