The Smith Family                                                 

Established in 1922, The Smith Family is Australia's  largest national education-oriented charity, we support disadvantaged Australian children to participate fully in their education, giving them the best chance at breaking the cycle of disadvantage. Our learning support and mentoring programs help children in need to fit in at school, keep up with their peers, and build aspirations for a better future for themselves.




Our student2student program works by matching students who need to improve their reading with peer buddies who help and encourage them with their reading. Peer support is central to the program’s success. Evidence indicates that one of the best ways to support students who have reading difficulties is for the help to come from others near their own age.

student2student involves three groups of participants:

  • Students in Years 3 to 8 assessed as being up to two years behind in their reading development and want additional support to improve their reading.

  • Reading buddies with good literacy skills who are at least two years older than the student. The buddies are trained by The Smith Family to help their students develop reading confidence and skills, using the ‘Pause, Prompt, Praise’ reading support method. 

  • Volunteer Supervisors who provide support for up to 10 reading buddies, helping them with problems and ensuring that they are supporting the students effectively.

Each student and buddy receives an identical book pack from The Smith Family. The reading buddy then telephones the student two to three times a week for at least 20 minutes, over an 18 week period. The student reads to the buddy, who uses the skills learnt in their training to assist the student with their reading and offer encouragement and praise. The buddy keeps a simple record of each phone call and reports progress to a Volunteer Supervisor fortnightly.


Andyinc Foundation have been supporters since 2017.