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During this time he realised that many young people he worked with might never have a holiday or visit the country during their childhood. He decided to establish a camp at Malmsbury to give these young people a positive life experience possibly for the first time. And so Doxa was born.
From its humble beginnings, hundreds of people have worked together to help make Father Joe’s dream of lasting change for disadvantaged young people a reality.
To all those who have been part of the story and to all who believe in making a difference, we are both grateful and indebted.
1972: Father Joe Giacobbe develops a vision of establishing a camp for young people to experience life away from the city after working in some of Melbourne’s most disadvantaged communities.
1973: A Sportsmen’s Night hosted by Roy Higgins raises $10,000 for Father Joe’s camp concept. This leads to the launch of an official appeal with funding from state and federal government and a final fundraising figure of $300,000.
1976: Malmsbury Camp is formally opened by Sir Henry Winneke, Governor of Victoria.
1992: The Doxa Cadetship Program is established, offering young people the opportunity of a tertiary education.
2004: Our City Camp is established on Elizabeth Street in Melbourne CBD, giving rural primary school children the chance to experience inner city life.
2007: Doxa School, Bendigo opens its doors for young people experiencing difficulty in the mainstream education system.
2015: Our University Pathways Program and University Discovery Program are both launched to give students in Years 9-12 a taster of university life and professional employment.
2016: Our Future Focus program is launched for Years 7-8 students, making us one of but a few Victorian organisations supporting young people through key developmental and life cycle stages across primary, secondary and tertiary education.