We were blown away by the hundreds of phone calls from our compatriots who wanted to make a donation.

Our goal is simple: to help young Italians on a temporary visa who are stranded in Australia with no family, no work and no money due to the coronavirus pandemic.

We wanted to convey this SOS to members of the Italo-Australian community, asking them to donate at least $100.

The response was amazing and the community donated over $100,000 on the day – that’s an average of $12,000 per hour.

The biggest surprise on the day was the participation of ordinary people who responded with great enthusiasm to our appeal.

Our foundation launched the youth assistance program on Monday, offering food vouchers to those in need.

The program will provide support for the two weeks of quarantine requested by the federal government before Italians are eligible to move to regional farms to collect fruit and vegetables.

The foundation has appointed Asja Borin to assist its vice president, Christian Bracci, in managing the project.

The project, titled ‘Aiutiamo i Giovani Italiani in Australia’ was inaugurated last Saturday at Lamonica IGA Haberfield, in Sydney, in the presence of the board members of the Father Atanasio Gonelli Charitable Fund, the volunteers who manned the phones during the radiothon and the first four young Italians to have received $100 food vouchers.

To apply for assistance, fill out the form available on the Father Atanasio Gonelli Charitable Fund’s website.

To contribute to the cause, download and complete the donation form.