iDareDream was established in WA in July 2018. It is the only organisation specifically addressing the needs of children in the primary care of their grandparents, usually due to parental neglect resulting from addiction, mental ill-health or accidental death.

iDareDream is the vision of founder Virginia Huupponen, who through her voluntary work with a small group of grandparent parents, became concerned with their lack of help dealing with the feelings of abandonment and lost self-worth felt by the children suddenly in their care.

With a group of dedicated volunteers, Virginia founded iDareDream to provide vital assistance and support to Grandparent Families by facilitating placement in extra-curricular activities and life-skills programs for the grandchildren.

These opportunities also provide the children connection and a sense of belonging to the wider community. 

Through these activities the children have an opportunity to discover something within themselves – some talent or some interest that matters to them, a dream they can hold and use to forge brighter futures for themselves.

iDareDream believes this is the most effective way of breaking the cycle of lives lost to hopelessness, substance abuse, violence and crime.

iDareDream’s Achievements

We are committed to providing effective community impact, ensuring positive and tangible results by carefully managing funding, and delivering responsible governance to maintain ongoing trust.    

During our first year we were nominated by one of our supporters to receive a small grant from the P & N Bank’s Helping Hands.

These funds, together with those raised by our inaugural Quiz Night and Silent Auction allowed us to

  • Sponsor 5 children to a CirQuest Holiday program
  • Help 1 boy attend a Scouts camp
  • Assist with the fees for 1 teenager to represent WA in the National Athletics Championship in Sydney
  • Sponsor 3 girls to a Junior Archaeology Club holiday program

In October 2019 Demeter Legacy Fund and Australian Communities Foundation provided a grant enabling us to facilitate an emotional literacy course for grandchildren aged 5-9 yrs.

The program provided a ‘language’ for the children and grandparents to identify and discuss a range of feelings the children experience. This also resulted in a deeper bonding and connection between grandparent and grandchild.

Results from this program were inspiring and encouraging, with reports of measurable and sustained changes in behaviours and attitudes of the participating children.

We have seen some major changes in his day to day life, he is more settled and able to cope with life’s little upsets and disappointments.  His teacher has also commented on his participation in class.”   Boy aged 7

“The girls loved it, and they are both more confident in themselves.”   Girls aged 7 & 9

“Managing her feelings is improving. Fantastic course for us grandparents too.”  Girl aged 9

View ABC Report above

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Virginia Huupponen  
Founder & CEO

Jason Sawkins  
Director & Treasurer

Helen O’Sullivan
Director & Secretary

Mike Andrews
Legal Advisor

Laura Gray
Grandcarer & Committee Member 

Christine Liveris
Committee Member