Hawthorn Indigenous Programs

Our vision is to close the gap in Indigenous health and education by delivering programs that focus on improving the education, mental health and social/emotional well-being of Indigenous people.

Our aim is to empower Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people to reach their full potential.

The announcement of a donation of one million dollars over five years for the club’s Indigenous Program was a first for the Foundation. The innovative partnership with the Epic Good Foundation encompasses sustainable foresight and unsurpassed loyalty. Through initiatives such as these, Hawthorn hopes to generate lasting relationships with Indigenous communities and help bring about real change nationally.

Schools Attendance Program


A program that aims to provide Worawa Aboriginal College students with relevant and meaningful work experience. Selected students will work at the Hawthorn Football Club one day per week during school terms. Program is focused on providing opportunities for Enterprise Skill development.


10% of Indigenous students who attend school less than 3 days per week will achieve the national minimum standard for NAPLAN

of Indigenous students who attend school less than 3 days per week
will achieve the national minimum standard for NAPLAN

20% is what this number will rise to if they attend 3-4 days per week

is what this number will rise to if they attend 3-4 days per week

65% is what this number will rise to if they attend 4-5 days per week

is what this number will rise to if they attend 4-5 days per week

55% of Indigenous students in remote areas attend school less than 4 days per week

of Indigenous students in remote areas attend school less than 4 days per week

80% of Indigenous students in very remote areas attend school less than 4 days per week

of Indigenous students in very remote areas attend school less than 4 days per week


Our program

Two school communities, Wadeye and Beswick, engaged in the program in 2019

Two school communities, Wadeye and Beswick, engaged in the program in 2019

Increase school attendance at schools in Wadeye and Beswick

Increase school attendance at schools in Wadeye and Beswick

180 young people in the NT to be exposed to Head space key messaging

180 young people in the NT to be exposed to Head space key messaging

Organised junior football competitions introduced in Wadeye and Beswick communities

Organised junior football competitions introduced in Wadeye and Beswick communities



Big River Hawks


The Big River Hawks is an under-18 football club that was established in 2010. It allows young men and women from the Katherine region and surrounding communities an opportunity to play in the Darwin-based NTFL.

Being part of the Big River Hawks team is a privilege to young people in the region, and to do so there are a number of rules that players must abide by to earn their spot in the team. These include regularly attending school, completing further training or having a position in the workforce.

The Big River Hawks program has seen an increase in local school attendance, as well as an increase in local employment amongst the regions Indigenous communities.

The team helps to develop leaders within the community and offers opportunities for Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians in the region to integrate.


Worawa School Program


Worawa Aboriginal College is a full boarding school for young Aboriginal women, years 7-10, and is Victoria’s only independent Aboriginal community school. It is the only boarding school in Australia that caters exclusively to Aboriginal girls. The College delivers a holistic program through an integrated academic, wellbeing and culture model and provides a rigorous education program within a cultural framework.

Hawthorn Football Club supports the college both on and off the program through a range of engagement activities and two main programs as part of the club's community engagement strategy.

Worawa work ready program

A program that aims to provide Worawa Aboriginal College students with relevant and meaningful work experience. Selected students will work at the Hawthorn Football Club one day per week during school terms. Program is focused on providing opportunities for Enterprise Skill development.


42% of Indigenous 15-24 year old’s were no in education, employment or training (2016)

Of Indigenous 15-24 year old’s were no in education, employment or training (2016)

60% Of Australia’s 25 year old’s unable to secure fill-time employment despite post-school qualifications

Of Australia’s 25 year old’s unable to secure fill-time employment despite post-school qualifications

55% Of Indigenous young people in very remote areas were not in employment, education or training

Of Indigenous young people in very remote areas were not in employment,
education or training

young Australians with year 10 or below are over 3 times more likely to not be in employment or training as those with tertiary education

young Australians with year 10 or below are over 3 times more likely to not be in
employment or training as those with tertiary education


Our program

Provides 300 hours of paid relevant work experience

Provides 300 hours of paid relevant work experience

Provides guidance towards gaining paid employment

Provides guidance towards gaining paid employment

Provides exposure to all potential employment clusters

Provides exposure to all potential employment clusters

Provides opportunities for young people to build enterprise skills

Provides opportunities for young people to build enterprise skills

Worawa Lady EagleHawks

Hawthorn Football Club supports the Worawa Lady Eaglehawks, a team that will compete in the under 16 Eastern Regions Girls Football League.

All players are boarding school students from Worawa Aboriginal College in Healesville. As part of their playing agreement, each player must be achieving the required educational outcomes if they want to be selected to play on the weekends.

We believe that with our support, the girls will be able to achieve their goals in the classroom as well as out on the field.

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