Blue Knot Foundation is proud to have the following patrons:
Professor Freda Briggs AO
It is with great sadness that Blue Knot Foundation was
informed of the passing of Professional Freda Briggs. A great loss to us all.
Emeritus Professor Freda Briggs was perhaps Australia's best-known expert on child protection. Through her roles as child protection professional, educator, author, scholar and ambassador she has worked ceaselessly and passionately towards her vision to provide a safer and more caring world for children. Freda spent 9 years as a consultant to Save the Children’ s international programs, 6 years as consultant to DVA on veterans’ children’s issues and has been an adviser to the New Zealand Police and Ministry of Education, and the Government of Fiji, Hong Kong and South Africa on child protection issues.
She was Foundation Dean of the De Lissa Institute of Early Childhood and Family Studies, Professor of Childhood Development at the University of South Australia, recipient of the inaugural Australian Humanitarian Award, ANZAC Fellowship Award, the Jean Denton Memorial Fellowship, the Creswick Fellowship Award, two university Chancellors’ community service awards, an Hon PhD from the University of Sheffield (UK 2008) and was Senior Australian of the Year in 2000/1. In the 2005 Queens Birthday Honours, Professor Freda Briggs received an Officer (AO) in the General Division Award for service to raising community and professional awareness of child abuse and neglect, and as advocate for effective child safety education programs. Freda was the author of 16 books and since the age of 60, has published a book a year and continued to publish extensively in international journals.
Thomas Keneally AO
Thomas Keneally is one of Australia’s most successful modern writers with an impressive twenty-seven fiction and ten non-fiction published titles. He has been short-listed for the Booker Prize on 4 occasions, winning it for the novel, Schindler’s Ark which was made into the Oscar winning film ‘Schindlers List’ by Stephen Spielberg. Mr. Keneally has won the Miles Franklin award twice and was awarded an Order of Australia in 1983 for services to Australian literature. His most recent book, released just before his 74th birthday, is the first volume of a three-volume history of Australia entitled ‘Australians: Origins to Eureka’, was launched by Prime Minister Kevin Rudd earlier this year.
Mr. Keneally published his first book in 1964 after leaving a Sydney seminary where he was studying for the priesthood. This decision was in part due to becoming disillusioned with his churches’ response to child abuse allegations, where he felt the views of lawyers were given preference over a compassionate response.
It is this commitment to compassion, and to telling untold stories about Australians whose lives represent a significant aspect our community history that drew him to support Blue Knot Foundation. With numbers greater than two million in Australia, yet little visibility, the realities of life for adult survivors of child abuse remain obscure to most in our community.
Blue Knot Foundation is proud to have the support of one of our most eloquent Australians, an Australian living treasure to help break the conspiracy of silence around abuse – and create greater awareness, understanding and support for adult survivors within our community. In accepting his Blue Knot Foundation role Mr. Keneally said he was extremely honoured to be a patron of such a key charity. We are absolutely delighted that he has taken on the role.