About Us

CREATE Foundation is the national consumer body for children and young people with an out-of-home care experience. We support children and young people from 0-25 who are currently in, or have experience in foster care, kinship care, permanent care or residential care.

Our Vision

That all children and young people with a care experience reach their full potential.

Our Mission

To create a better life for children and young people in care.

To do this we;



children and young people to each other, CREATE and their community

to Empower


children and young people to build self-confidence, self-esteem, and skills that enable them to have a voice and be heard

to Change


the care system, in consultation with children and young people, through advocacy to improve policies, practices and services, and increase community awareness

Core Principles

What we value

Our Story

CREATE's Journey

In 1993, Jan Owen AM formed the Australian Association of Children and Young People in Care (AAYPIC), a variety of state and territory groups that aimed to give children and young people in care a say in the decisions that affect them. It was in March 1999 that AAYPIC networks met in Brisbane to form one combined organisation and call it CREATE – not an acronym but an action – meaning to ‘create opportunities with and for children and young people in care.’

Over 20 years, led by the courage, strength and youth advocacy of our Young Consultants, CREATE has contributed to many significant improvements to the care system, including;

  • The introduction of transition from care and post care services and legislation in each state a territory
  • The development of a Charter of Rights for Children and Young People in Care in each state and territory
  • The establishment of a National Children’s Commissioner
  • The development of National Standards for Out-of-Home Care
  • Accreditation of service providers in Out-of-Home care
  • Increased supports to age 21 in all states and territories

CREATE has grown significantly from its humble beginnings at garages and community halls across Australia, and is now a national organisation with offices in each state and territory with almost 50 staff and over 26,000 children and young people with a care experience as clubCREATE  members. While we’ve grown, what hasn’t changed is our commitment to our vision that all children and young people with a care experience reach their full potential. Our model of  Connect to Empower to Change has helped us play a vital role in the care sector today by ensuring the voices of children and young people are at the centre of decision making and heard loud and clear.

In 2019, to celebrate CREATE’s 20th Birthday, we put together a booklet of some of the highlights of our achievements in those 20 years.

Read this article by CREATE’s Executive Director of Research, Joseph McDowall to learn more about CREATE and our history.

“CREATE has opened up so many doors for me to advocate on behalf of young people to make their experience better. They gave me a safe environment when I did not know any. I have made lifelong friends. I will never forget what CREATE has done for me, CREATE is so important to ensure the next generation of kids have someone to speak up for them”

"CREATE’s very existence is a testament to the courage and resilience of children and young people in care across Australia. Our story recognises all those who have made us who we are today and celebrate the power and courage of children and young people with a care experience who have stood up and used their voice to CREATE a better care system."

CREATE's Strategic Plan

CREATE Foundation’s 2022 – 2027 Strategic Plan will be focusing on mental health and wellbeing, raising the age of criminal responsibility and transitioning from care to adulthood.

CREATE had a humble beginning, starting from our founder Jan Owen in suburban Brisbane trying to provide opportunities for young people with a care experience to have a say in decisions that affected their lives. We now support over 46,000 children and young people who are in care through no fault of their own in Australia today. CREATE is also committed to ensuring that its programs and activities are inclusive and the participation of First Nations Children and Young People is in proportion to their representation in the care population. 

Demand for our services and support has never been higher and in this next five-year period we will focus on building our capacity to respond to this ever-growing need and prioritising the engagement and support of young people 

Cover of Strat Plan

Find out more about CREATE