The Indigenous Literacy Foundation

The Indigenous Literacy Foundation (ILF) was founded by Suzy Wilson and set up by members of the Australian Book Industry in 2005 with the core aim of drawing upon the skills and expertise of the Australian book industry to address literacy levels in remote Indigenous communities.

The ILF aims to raise literacy levels and improve the lives and opportunities of Indigenous children living in remote and isolated regions. This is done through the delivery of books and literacy resources, publishing of community books and visits out to remote communities. In addition, the Foundation advocates to raise community awareness of Indigenous literacy issues.

Set up in 2011, the Foundation is a not-for-profit charity, without any government or major corporate funding. It works with the support of the Australian Publishers Association, the Australian Booksellers Association and the Australian Society of Authors, along with a team of ambassadors, volunteers and


Our mission is to make a positive difference in the lives of Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children by focusing on ways to improve their literacy levels. We believe that a young child's future educational experiences can be greatly improved through enjoyable and positive engagements with books in both the family and community environments at an early age.


Our key objective is to make a positive difference in the lives of young Australian Indigenous children so that they are enabled to make the most of their educational opportunities in schools.


  • Provide books and support Australian Indigenous parents so that they and their young children and babies can enjoy literacy experiences together
  • Encourage links between the book trade, schools and libraries to ensure the supply of books in remote Indigenous communities
  • Assist with the writing and publishing of books in the child's first language as well as English
  • Ensure engagement and familiarity with the range and types of books that children will experience in schools


We place the utmost emphasis on the importance of early literacy development in enhancing the life potential of every child in society.


The Indigenous Literacy Foundation acknowledges and respects the unique place of Australia's first peoples and commits its energy and resources to ensuring Australian Indigenous children have every opportunity, early in their lives, to do well in their school years.


The ILF have been visiting the schools on Melville Island since 2012. Each year they bring a group of outstanding authors, illustrators and ambassadors to Tiwi College to role model the influence the power of the written word can have, to our young people.Through writing and illustrating workshops students have an opportunity to develop new skills and engage with some of Australia’s leading authors such as Andy Griffiths and Alison Lester.

The ILF have been instrumental in sending carefully selected and appropriate books to Tiwi College which has supplied our library with outstanding books to inspire our students. Books from the ILF are now also used as weekly Positive Behaviour Awards, to initiate a regular program of taking books home to read.

Thanks to the generosity of ILF, for the past three years our Senior Girls class have travelled annually to Sydney as part of the Create Initiative to work with leading authors, illustrators and publishers, to write a book, suitable for Indigenous students. Thus far the young ladies of this class have written Bangs 2 Jurrukuk, Tiwi Girl and Our Story (Nginingawila Ngirramini ).

Please visit their blog regarding our latest visit:

Our relationship is a strong and powerful one and is set to flourish even further, into the future.

For more information, please visit the website:


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