There are a growing number of vulnerable older children and young people aged between 9 and 15 years old getting caught up in the child protection system. To counteract this, NCNS will be offering a new service – Youth Hope.
Youth Hope is a new innovative service to improve the lives of 9 to 15 year olds who are vulnerable or at risk of significant harm as a result of neglect, homelessness, domestic violence or drug and alcohol use. It is being delivered in a number of target areas – Hunter/Central Coast, Dubbo/Parkes, Penrith/Blacktown, South West Sydney and Tamworth/Armidale.
In the Penrith Area, Wesley Mission, NCNS and Bridging the Gap are taking on this program and will commence offering services in late May.
The aim of Youth Hope is to not only prevent the increasing number of 9 to 15 year olds from getting caught up in the child protection system, but also to help them stay at school or in education and training.
Vulnerable young people who access Youth Hope services are likely to receive a different type of support, depending on what works for them. This new approach is very different to past practice, which slotted vulnerable children into predetermined programs thought to be effective.
Youth Hope is evidence-based, focused on demonstrated effectiveness for and responsiveness to the needs of young people, including by involving them in the choices about effective supports.
“Intervening earlier in the lives of children and young people is the best way to prevent them from entering care.”