Barnardos Australia is grateful to our wonderful ambassadors who generously donate their time to highlight the issues of child abuse and neglect in Australia.
Lisa Wilkinson is one of Australia’s most admired and respected journalists and sought-after television presenters.
A dedicated and passionate Barnardos ambassador since 2003, Lisa says “I am committed to doing whatever I can to help spread the Barnardos message. It’s an organisation that literally changes the lives of children who would otherwise be lost to an uncaring system. And the number of smiles they generate on a daily basis, probably says it all.”
Ben Fordham is one of Sydney’s most successful radio and TV hosts with his Sydney Live program on No. 1 rating radio station 2GB.
As a devoted father of two children, Ben is a passionate advocate for what Barnardos strives to achieve. Any charity that helps children is one that Ben supports. “I couldn’t be prouder to be a supporter and ambassador of Barnardos, the work they do is simply incredible.”
Natarsha Belling presents the national 10 News First update each weekday morning and is one of Australia’s best-known and popular news presenters.
An ambassador since 2011, Natarsha says “Children are our future and every child deserves the chance to be loved and grow up in a safe, nurturing environment. Barnardos ensures children in need receive that life-saving support and have the chance to chase their dreams. As a mother of two young sons, I can’t imagine a greater organisation that protects the innocent and guarantees our future generation has a chance to be loved and nurtured.”
Jo Casamento is a vibrant, dynamic and well-respected journalist and media commentator with over two decades of experience spanning TV, Radio, Newspapers, Magazines and Online. She is currently on TV as a regular host on Network Ten’s Studio 10 & a panellist on The Project and writes a weekly social column for News Limited in The Wentworth Courier which is published on news.com.au.
Jo came on board in 2018 as a Barnardos ambassador.
Samantha Harris is an Australian fashion model, who became the second Aboriginal model to front Vogue Australia at the age of 19.
An ambassador since 2013, Samantha was inspired to get involved after seeing the impact Barnardos made on young lives. “I grew up in a loving and supportive family and I think every child should have that opportunity. I’m really inspired by the work Barnardos do to support vulnerable children and families in crisis."
Heidi Middleton is the co-founder of Sass & Bide, an iconic Australian fashion label that is recognised globally for its eclectic and bold design aesthetic.
Heidi has been a Barnardos ambassador since 2004. Her passion for nurturing and protecting children was encapsulated in her words emblazoned on the sass & bide Barnardos charity t-shirt; “Children are the collective garden of the world. They need and deserve love! Just as a flower needs water… We must protect these exquisite creations.”
Tina Arena is an internationally renowned singer/songwriter with a career spanning four decades and combined album sales topping 10 million.
On becoming a Barnardos Australia ambassador in 2014, Tina said “I am so proud take a stand against child abuse and neglect. Barnardos do such an important job in the community keeping children safe. As a mother I applaud their belief that every child deserves a safe and secure home.”
James Mathison is a successful TV and radio presenter.
James has been an ambassador since 2015 and believes "Barnardos provide safe havens for abused and neglected kids and raised the issue of the thousands of children in Australia who suffer abuse every year and as a dad, that just breaks my heart”.
Professor Kerryn Phelps
Professor Kerryn Phelps AM is a doctor, health and human rights advocate and politician. In 2018 she was elected to the House of Representatives as an Independent for Wentworth.
Kerryn and her wife Jackie have been Barnardos ambassadors since 2013. They adopted their youngest daughter Gabi from foster care in 2012 and continue to work tirelessly for the rights of the child.
Jackie Stricker-Phelps is a human rights and same-sex rights advocate and was instrumental in having Marriage Equality recognised in Australian law in 2017. After lobbying the NSW government to have the laws on same sex adoption changed, Jackie and Kerryn adopted their youngest daughter Gabi in 2012.
Jackie and her wife Kerryn have been Barnardos ambassadors since 2013 and are passionate about the rights of all children to a safe and loving home and continue to fight for the right for children to be adopted.