One of the first Chinese/Vietnamese leaders of a non-profit organisation in Australia, Lily Luong is aiming to raise more than $100,000 this year for families who live in poverty or suffer with mental illness.

Luong founded LBL Philanthropy, a company raising money through share trading. In other words, the profits from stock it sells or buys are to be donated to its charitable causes. Other avenues used to raise funds are fund raising, partnerships and also retailing second hand books and gift cards.

Luong herself has been brought up in financially challenging circumstances so she understands living a difficult lifestyle. Born to part Chinese and Vietnamese parents, Luong grew up in a single-parent home where money was a daily struggle. She was her mother’s carer since age 14. Her mother had a mental illness, which Luong has lived with since she herself was in her late 20s. After her mother died, Luong was inspired to help people in need and make a difference to the world. “I have participated in volunteer work for the Salvation Army, St Vincent de Paul and Wesley Mission but then realised that the best way for me to help the causes I am passionate about is by creating this organisation and collecting funds from businesses who want to support a worthwhile cause,” she said.

In the near future, Luong prepares to provide food and other items to children who are living with poverty or mental illness. She plans to send volunteer teachers overseas and focus on a ‘chicken project’ that helps children and families learn to farm to make a sustainable living.

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