Annalise and her family, Emmett three years, Jospeh six years, Geoffrey eight years, Jethro nine years and Lleyton 16 years, were referred by the principal from their primary school. The family had experienced horrific domestic violence. Since 2015, when they left, they had moved to a refuge, to emergency accommodation, back to the refuge, then to private rentals until they found their current home.

The family’s first ever holiday, in June 2018, was to Lorne. They stayed at the Mantra in a two bedroom apartment and visited, with complimentary admission, Lorne Sea Baths, Otway Fly Treetop Adventures and the Great Ocean Road Wildlife Park.

Kat Stewart, one of our Ambassadors, interviewed Annalise at our inaugural Social Tourism Forum in October 2018 about the impact of her family’s first ever holiday. There was not ‘a dry eye in the house’.

Since then, Annalise has gone on to get a job, and she regularly volunteers for the Magical Getaway Foundation to give back to help other families like hers. Annalise is a true testament to social tourism and to show that, it’s not about the holiday, it’s what the holiday brings.

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