Happy New Year 2019!!

We are pinching ourselves. It has definitely been a massive year that has brought out our best and fueled dreams for children!

Here’s a little run-down to wet the palette & make your chest swell with pride:

Remember Tashi wishing us a happy 2018?

Remember our magical Sunset Soiree raising money for the Nanna Project?

Remember Matt shaving his luscious locks to raise money for projectHELP?

Remember gorgeous Cam Dellbridge took off his curls for a cause too!?

Remember the awesome Colour Stampede organised by two of our Change Agents in Hervey Bay, Thomas & Olivia?

Remember the very VERY long lunch with rugby legend Billy Moore at Kingfisher Bay Resort?
Remember standing with us as we declared our commitment to rescue, reunite and reintegrate 301 children from Asha Orphanage with their families?

Remember that great animation we made to help get the message out that volunteering in orphanages causes more harm than good?

Remember having ‘the trafficking of children into orphanages’ recognised as a form of modern day slavery. Later passed by the House of Representatives in Australia as the Modern Slavery Bill 2018?

Remember giving our Dream Team in Nepal a massive shout out & awards recognising their incredible dedication?

Remember our 2018 Cycle for Brighter Futures?

Remember Stuart’s Gift?

Remember being finalists (then winning!) the 2018 World Responsible Tourism Awards?

Remember taking the volunteering pledge?


Remember Kate & Zafina speaking at the Trust Conference in London?

We must also raise a glass to our ongoing corporate partnerships with Boom Shankar, The Zen Den & inchargebox. How wonderful it is to work with you!

And to our partners in collaboration, including: Tearfund Ireland, ACCIR, Asian Aid, The Intrepid Foundation, ReThink Orphanages especially.

There is great strength in working together to amplify the voices of children and make sure they are raised to be thriving, vibrant and connected to family, community and opportunity.

And… sound the trumpets…

We are proud to announce our exciting new partnership with the Australian Government, receiving funding through an Australian Aid: Friendship Grant for our work with children trafficked into orphanages in Nepal.

Our Australian Aid: Friendship Grant will help us close orphanages and trace, reunify and reintegrate trafficked children with their families in Kathmandu and surrounding provinces in collaboration with our in-country partner The Himalayan Innovative Society, the Nepal Government and other key stakeholders.

The funds will assist with transit care, including health, welfare and psychosocial support, for 30 children, and facilitate and monitor family reunification and community reintegration. We will also work to strengthen families by providing financial and enterprise support.

Do you know someone who might like to help us get more children home to family?

Please tell them about our Rescue Crew.


Maybe 2019 is your year to take the plunge and experience a journey like no other?

We have some pretty awesome offerings for every budget. If you’re a sucker for colourful fun at a moment’s notice our Holi Trip is perfecto! If you prefer a little more planning you should check out our India offerings. We have a Fierce Love Whirlwind Tour that’ll bring you to life and our annual Cycle for Brighter Futures that’ll certainly make you feel like you’re well and truly alive.

Our Charity Trek gives you plenty of time for booking holidays and saving for the ultimate trip of a lifetime! This adventure includes precious time in Kathmandu, Pokhara and a trek to ignite all senses!

Whatever magical spectacularness you breathe life into in 2019, it’s going to be awesome and we are proud to celebrate and invigorate our friendship for another trip around the sun. Thanks for being part of the FMN Fam Bam xx

Lots of love now, and always…

Happy New Year!!!

Ande + Em & the FMN Board
on behalf of our incredible teams in Australia, Nepal, Uganda & India


Merry Christmas 2018

Namaste friends

First and foremost, as always, we thank you for your continued support.
Your character and compassion drives our work and helps us on our mission: strengthening families and communities to raise their children to be thriving, vibrant and connected to family, community and opportunity.
We are proud of our work and of our unfaltering commitment to collaborate with like-minded folk, striving for the greatest outcomes with, for and by children who have been taken from their families through no fault of their own.
Every reunification is a testament to the incredible amount of support, hard work and donations received by generous souls who believe in the power of love.
Your families are in our thoughts and prayers, and we wish you all a spectacular holiday season filled with laughter and good cheer, making wonderful memories with your loved ones. What a fabulous time of year!
Thanks again for standing with us as we aim to end the orphanage era and get kids home to family, where they belong.
Merry everything, happy always & lots of love,

Andrea, Em & FMN Board
on behalf of our remarkable teams in Australia, Nepal, Uganda & India

Pop-up schools!

It is truly awesome that we can make ‘schools’ pop up anywhere they’re needed!!

When you donate to projectHELP and our Brighter Futures Study Centres you are providing direct assistance to children and young people living in compounding challenging circumstances.

You are funding a smorgasbord of opportunity. You are paving the way for brighter futures.

Every child needs champions, a team of people who believe in them no matter what. Thanks champs!

Only part way there

Australia Outlawing Orphanage Tourism Goes Only Part of the Way

Australia is the first country in the world to outlaw orphanage tourism. This can go part of the way, but we each have to take responsibility and do our research to ensure the ‘help’ we send abroad has the intended positive effect.

Co-founder of Learning Service and co-author of the new book ‘Learning Service: The Essential Guide to Volunteering Abroad’ Claire Bennett reports here.

Interview with Kate van Doore on RN Breakfast

FMN co-founder of Forget Me Not, international children’s rights lawyer and an academic at Griffith Law School who specialises in human trafficking (especially orphanage trafficking), modern slavery and child rights, hit the airwaves this morning.

Australia is the first country in the world to recognise orphanage trafficking as a form of modern-day slavery.

We believe around 80 per cent of children in orphanages around the world have at least one living parent but are in orphanages in a bid to attract international volunteers and significant donor dollars.

We call this “orphanage trafficking” and know first-hand that children are actively recruited into orphanages for the purpose of exploitation and profit made from orphanage tourism, where people pay or donate to volunteer and visit orphanages.

Your good deeds may be harming children rather than helping them.


Australia’s first Modern Slavery Bill is passed


An historic day as Australia’s first Modern Slavery Bill is passed.

Modern Slavery Bill 2018

Orphanage trafficking and exploitation in orphanages is captured in the Act’s definition of modern slavery.

Orphanage tourism has now been recognised as a modern slavery risk!

Thank you Senator Linda Reynolds for your tireless advocacy.

Congratulations to our team at ReThink Orphanages Australia in this monumental win.

As momentum builds to rethink orphanages, we hope other countries will follow suit.

Learn how to be part of the solution at www.loveyougive.org

BBC News: Australia says orphanage trafficking is modern-day slavery



Meet Rajan and Suraj

Reuniting families makes us proud.

Two brothers, eleven year-old Rajan and ten year-old Suraj were brought to Asha Orphanage seven years ago by their mother Manmaya because she couldn’t contact her husband nor afford to pay their school fees.

She used to visit them in every three months because her village was just two hours away. Each visit pulled at her heartstrings when the boys would ask, “Mummy, when will you take us home forever?”

Manmaya wants desperately to take care and raise her children. She has worked hard to get her boys home. Manmaya says raising her children to be thriving, vibrant and connected to family, community and opportunity will not be such a struggle now that she has financial independence through her newly established canteen earning around USD 200 per month.

Finally, Manmaya can take her boys home forever.

On 28 May 2018 Rajan and Suraj returned home to their village and family life with their mother, older brother, maternal grandparents, aunt, uncle and two cousins!

These two boys were super excited to meet their grandparents. Their 17 year-old brother was there to welcome them home. Their grandmother says the boys are eating truckloads of food, which she understands is a combination of teenage hood and seven years of institutionalisation.

All the mothers are grateful for their children to be home, happy and healthy. The boys feel safe and are having a great time at their local community school near home.

The Love You Give

After watching this short film (or before) you can take the VOLUNTEERING PLEDGE that:

Children belong in families, not orphanages. I pledge to not volunteer in orphanages and #changevolunteering for the better.

Or, if you’re still thinking of volunteering, you can view this VOLUNTEER CHECKLIST online to make sure your time overseas is spent making a genuine difference. Unfortunately, some volunteer-sending companies may be more concerned with creating a ‘life-changing’ experience for the volunteer, with less focus on the purpose and the needs of local communities.

We need your help.

There are many ways to help us get this message out. One of the best ways we find is to share stories. Real stories. You might recognise these two remarkable women. Namrata and Purnima bravely share their experiences with humility and hope for change.

We invite you to share their stories.

Be a storyteller and help change the world for children.


Meet Raju

Reuniting families makes us proud.

A local Pastor moonlighting as a broker trafficking children into orphanages coaxed 7 year-old Raju’s poverty-stricken family to admit their son into Asha Orphanage so they had one less mouth to feed. The family was only allowed to visit once during the seven years Raju was held at the orphanage.

Raju is now 14 years old and went home to his mum and dad and five siblings on 4 June 2018. We continue to support the family by assisting with education costs. His mother believes Raju’s 10 year-old brother looks older than him because he was starved for seven years in the orphanage and he is underdeveloped and malnourished. Raju is really enjoying school and loves being home with his family.

Orphanages as trafficking hubs

Today the story of Forget Me Not and our research and advocacy on orphanage trafficking was shared at the Trust Conference in London.

A powerful voice was Zafina, who spoke about her experience.

For those who say to us,”Yes this is a tragedy, but it is not happening in the orphanage/hostel/childcare home/shelter that we support or visit” – Think again! The stories are the same. Children belong in families not orphanages.

Please watch and listen to the impact of orphanage trafficking, and why volunteering in orphanages is never a good idea.