top of page

Our Story

The Foundation is a First Nations run grass-roots organisation which supports First Nations students across Victoria to attend the school of their choice with all necessary supplies.   We also support the costs of formative school experiences such as camps and excursions. It is the only First Nations organisation that supports a child throughout their entire 13-year educational journey. 


By ensuring that First Nations students can receive the education of their choice and fit in with their school community, we have opened the doors for thousand of First Nations students. We listen to these students and their families and walk beside them on their educational journey from Prep to Year 12.

In the year 2000, Vicki CLark, John Arthur and Carol Messer began the Opening The Doors Foundation. Vicki witnessed the need firsthand of First Nations families and had a dream to help, inspired by her mum who used to support First Nations families with books and shoes. John had the commercial background and the desire to assist and helped to set up the foundation and make that dream a reality. Carol gave her time and professional secretarial support. A partnership was born and continued for the next 24 years, assisting First Nations students through over 12,000 grants  dispersing more that $7 million. 

Students Girls Just Wanna Have Fun hi res_DCA0667L.jpg

Opening The Doors Foundation celebrates 24 years of supporting First Nations education!

In 2021 OTDF turned 20 and a special video was made. We are proud to present this video made with the help of the Alfred Foundation and Black and White stories.

OTDF 20th Birthday

OTDF 20th Birthday

Play Video
bottom of page