Give an Opportunity

to a child like Amina

Our Mission

To empower children and youth in Sierra Leone by providing them with opportunities for growth and development

Our Vision

A world where every child, regardless of their background or financial status, has equal access to the resources and support they need to reach their full potential. We believe that education is the key to unlocking a brighter future for all, and it is our mission to make this vision a reality. Through our efforts, we strive to help create a more equitable and sustainable world where all children have the chance to succeed and thrive.

What We Do

The Fig Tree Children has been making a positive impact on the lives of children and youth in Sierra Leone since September 2015. Our efforts provide resources that allow carers to support and educate their children.

The devastating Ebola outbreak compounded the already dire situation faced by the country, which had already been ravaged by a decade-long civil war. The epidemic left an estimated 12,000 children orphaned, with many of them facing exploitation, discrimination, and the threat of human trafficking.

Our efforts are focused on Sierra Leone where we provide support to the sponsored child’s carer and pay school fees directly to the schools their children attend. We believe in providing these young ones with the best possible education and support so that they may overcome their difficult circumstances and reach their full potential.


photo © The Fig Tree Children – a Christmas day trip to River No.2 Beach

 Our Story

The Fig Tree Children is a non-profit organisation based in Brisbane, started by Jane Shakespeare in 2015 with the goal of supporting orphaned and vulnerable children and youth in Sierra Leone. Jane’s journey with TFTC began with a trip to Sierra Leone in February 2006, where she sought to understand the impact of microcredit initiatives on women’s lives.

The impact of the ten-year civil war, which ended in 2002, was very apparent. There were many orphans and young people displaced, living on the streets and in need of care and support.

Many of these children were taken in by extended family members, friends, or members of their communities who opened their homes and hearts to these displaced children, despite the challenges these carers faced in providing for their own families.

With Peter’s support, Jane established The Fig Tree Children, with a focus on supporting these carers and providing the children in their care with access to education and a brighter future. The organisation continues to work towards this goal, striving to give children the opportunity to succeed and thrive.

Photo ©️ The Fig Tree Children: Jane in Funkia Town, Sierra Leone at a workshop run by Dr Greg Mews from University of the Sunshine Coast, Dreamtown and Youth Dream Centre, Nov 2022

Different ways you can help

Give a child an opportunity today

Become a supporter of an orphaned or vulnerable child or youth in Sierra Leone today. For just AUD$53 per month, you can provide a world of opportunity and support. Your contribution will cover their school fees, and provide them with all the necessary materials, including a uniform, backpack, books, writing utensils, shoes, and more. Additionally, your support will also provide monthly assistance to the child’s carer.

Beyond the classroom, these children also benefit from opportunities to socialise and play with their peers through organised outings and activities. Our programs also extend a helping hand by providing essential items, such as comfortable bedding, insecticide-treated mosquito nets, necessary medical supplies, food, clothing, hygiene kits, radios for remote learning, sanitary products, Veronika buckets, etc.

Buy one girl a year's supply of Sanitary Pads

Help us provide a girl in Sierra Leone with a year's worth of sanitary pads, either reusable or disposable depending on her preference and situation, for just $30 AUD ($17 GBP).

Unfortunately, many girls in Sierra Leone can't afford sanitary pads and have to resort to using scraps of cloth, called "pieces", which can lead to unreliable and unsanitary conditions during their menstrual cycles.

The Fig Tree Ambassador Programme

Become a Fig Tree Ambassador by making a regular donation. Monthly donations are so important to us – and so deeply appreciated. Those crucial regular contributions, no matter how small, allow us to plan our work with greater certainty. Our three Ambassador levels are:

$10 AUD per month – Bronze

$15 AUD per month – Silver

$25 AUD per month – Gold

Our Target: 100 Ambassadors!

Emergency Medical Fund

When illness strikes children or their guardians, we aim to offer support. Our goal is to ensure they receive proper medical attention from a qualified healthcare professional, covering the costs of any necessary treatments or medications. A recent example of this support was when a child was burned in a pot of boiling water. Our in-country program manager worked with Fig Tree Children Funding to secure the medical attention the child needed and they are now recovering well. Another case involved a boy who required an appendix removal surgery, which was funded by donors of The Fig Tree Children.

Become a Volunteer Today

Have you ever wanted to directly make a difference and give an opportunity to a child living in one of the poorest countries in the world but can’t commit to donating financially? Volunteering your time to help The Fig Tree Children is another way you can make a real difference. Contact us to find out more.

Contact us

We’ve Raised Over $400,000

85% of funds raised are for the direct benefit of the children in the Fig Tree programme. We pay school fees directly to the school each of the children attends, buy school materials (uniform, shoes, bag, books, pens, pencils, etc) and give the child’s carer a monthly allowance to help them provide for the child in their care.

No donation is too small

We are currently providing opportunities for 84 children and youth in Sierra Leone

These children are located in Allentown, Freetown, Bo, Makeni, Newton, Waterloo and Kenema. We want to be able to reach out to children who are living even more remotely. Unfortunately, at this time, our resources do not allow us to travel further afield than we already do.


Photo ©️ The Fig Tree Children: one of our beneficiaries in school

Our blog

Research and experiences from our work in Sierra Leone

The Giving Guide 2021

The Giving Guide 2021

Make gift-giving meaningful: With gifts that show you careIt can be so hard to think of good present ideas – especially for someone that seems to have it all! That’s why we’ve put together The Giving Guide. The Giving Guide highlights just a few of...

read more
Capabilities Approach

Capabilities Approach

Work from development economists can be difficult for any layman to remember, particularly because there is still so much unnecessary poverty and suffering in this world. There is, however, the theory entitled The Capabilities Approach that,...

read more
Freetown Landslide

Freetown Landslide

A lot can happen in three years, especially in the eyes of a child. In Freetown, this is an understatement. On the 14 of August 2017 the citizens of Freetown had experienced the impacts of a devastating landslide that left over 1,000 people dead or...

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A day in the life of Christiana

A day in the life of Christiana

Christiana*Let’s spend a day with Christiana. Christiana lives with her father and brother, Peter. Her father had to stay at home to care for Peter after his son got sick, and as a result, he lost his job as a driver. His wife (the children’s...

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World Children’s Day

World Children’s Day

Encourage Change this World Children’s Day: November 20, 2020November 20 is a significant historical date for children, their wellbeing and safety worldwide. With the UN General Assembly adopting both the Declaration of the Rights of the Child and...

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International Day of the Girl

International Day of the Girl

Sunday 11 October 2020, across the globe the spotlight is on the rights of women and girls, everywhere. The 2020 theme, “My voice, our equal future”, rallies to protect young girls and their healthy and safe progression into the future by bringing...

read more


ZONTA Club of Brisbane Metro Breakfast

Corporate Sponsors

ZONTA Club of Brisbane Metro Breakfast

Some of the heartwarming moments that made 2023 a truly fantastic year for The Fig Tree Children! 🌟 Your incredible support made it possible for us to provide clothing and hygiene parcels for 85 children and youths in Sierra Leone, exceeding our expectations. The joy on their faces during the Christmas parcel distribution and lunch for 50 orphans was priceless.

A massive shoutout to Caritas for their vital support, and a special thanks to @thefigtreegiftshop for matching donations dollar-for-dollar. Your generosity is changing lives!

As we step into 2024, we’re gearing up to pay University/College fees for 9 of our students, with 4 starting their first year. Here’s to a year filled with joy, prosperity, and continued kindness. Thank you for being amazing supporters of The Fig Tree Children! 🧡

#throwbackpost #ImpactfulGiving #FigTreeChildren #NewYearJoy

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Let`s remember that our true wealth isn`t just measured by what we acquire, but by the impact we make in the lives of others. At The Fig Tree Children, we believe that giving is not just a gesture; it`s a lifeline for children in Sierra Leone. Join us on this journey of making lives richer, one act of kindness at a time. 💚📚

#GiveBack #EmpowerChildren #TheFigTreeChildren #providingopportunities

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In the journey of empowering children and youth, remember: `To the world, you may be just one person, but to one child, you may be the world.` 🌍

Your support is the key to unlocking their potential and creating a brighter future. Join us in making a difference by donating or becoming a sponsor! 🌟

Click the link in our bio. 💚

#FigTreeChildren #EmpowerThroughEducation #MakeADifferenceToday

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Did you know that by nurturing and supporting the growth of a child, you`re playing a vital role in shaping their outlook on life and their potential for success? 🌱💪

It`s incredible to think about the impact we can have on the next generation. By offering encouragement, guidance, and love, we can empower children to unlock their full potential and become the change-makers our world needs. 🌟🌏

So let`s come together and make a difference. Let`s invest our time, energy, and resources into supporting children`s education, well-being, and dreams. 🤝💙

Join us in making a positive impact! Share this post to spread awareness and inspire others to contribute their time or resources towards uplifting children everywhere. ✨🌈

#HelpingChildren #ShapingTheFuture #EmpoweringYouth #ChangingLives #DonateToEducation #InspireHope #BeTheChange #ChildhoodMatters #FutureOfHumanity #TheFigTreeChildren

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Introducing Thaimu*, a shining beacon of resilience from Sierra Leone! 🌟❤️

Thaimu`s story is a testament to the transformative power of compassion and support. 🙏

When we first met Thaimu at just 9 months old, he faced unimaginable challenges. His beloved mother had passed away, leaving him in the loving care of his dedicated aunt. Yet, she struggled to provide him with even the most basic needs, resulting in his unfortunate battle with malnutrition. 😢

But together, we changed Thaimu`s life for the better! 💫 By providing a monthly allowance, we eased the burden on his aunt, ensuring he receives proper nutrition and care. Additionally, we are now funding Thaimu`s education, supplying school fees and materials, and enabling this little guy to eventually pursue his dreams. 📚🎓

We invite you to join our noble cause! 🤝💚 By donating or becoming a sponsor, you can help other children in Sierra Leone, like Thaimu, unlock their full potential and embrace a brighter future. Together, we can create a world where no child is left behind! 🌈✨

Click the link in our bio to know more! 👆🏻

*Pseudonym used

#TransformingLives #EmpoweringDreams #EveryChildMatters #JoinOurCause #MakeADifference #SierraLeoneStrong

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Making a difference begins with empowering the next generation! 🌍✨

At our organisation, we firmly believe that empowering the next generation is the key to making a positive impact on society. By providing children and youth in Sierra Leone with opportunities to grow and develop, we aim to create a brighter future for them and the communities they belong to. We understand the significance of nurturing young minds and offering them the guidance and support they need to flourish.

Join us today in our mission! By working hand in hand, we can ensure that children and youth have access to quality education, opportunities for personal growth, and the support they need to thrive. 🙌🤝

Interested in helping? Visit our website or click the link in our bio. 👆🏻🌟

#Empowerment #YouthDevelopment #MakeADifference #SierraLeone #JoinUsToday #TheFigTreeChildren

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Get in Touch. Get Involved.

Please contact us using the contact methods below. Thank you

PO Box 736, Paddington Queensland 4064

Call Us: +61 431 895 733

    Contact us

    We acknowledge the First Nations People of Australia as the custodians and traditional owners of the land from which we advocate for improving access to quality education for and providing opportunities for orphaned and vulnerable children and youths (male and female) in Sierra Leone. We pay our respect to Indigenous Elders, past, present and emerging, and acknowledge and uphold their continuing relationship to this land. This is, was and always will be Aboriginal land.