Youth Reach

Youth Reach Offers Essential Life Skills and Support.

Young people face many challenges in their lives and Youth Reach is there to support them. Run by the St Vincent de Paul Society, Youth Reach is a free drop-in centre located in Brookvale that provides a range of programs, activities and facilities for young people.

Dee Why RSL has steadily supported Youth Reach for over 10 years through a combination of allocated weekly Cash Housie sessions and cash funding, which has seen the charity receive more than $100,000 in funding over this time.

Youth Reach runs daily programs for 18 to 24-year-olds to gain the essential skills needed to live independently including job readiness training, meal planning, cooking, budgeting, advocacy and information on a wide variety of issues. Youth Reach also provides after-school programs and activities for 11 to 17-year-olds including homework assistance, arts and crafts, music and fitness. The centre offers a gym, kitchen, pool table, table tennis, basketball, computers, internet access, music studio and video games.

“With the ongoing support from Dee Why RSL, we have been able to continue our café skills training program in which disadvantaged and disengaged local young people are able to participate in a program that will give them nationally accredited coffee skills,” said Nicholas, Case Worker.

“The training program is aimed at young people who may be experiencing a range of barriers inhibiting their ability when applying for jobs. Barriers can include homelessness, mental health issues, financial disadvantage, limited education, social exclusion or self-esteem issues.

To give just one example, Mason, a young male in his early 20s who was experiencing homelessness due to unemployment, was assisted with building his job skills and accessing crisis accommodation. Mason now has a job, is able to pay for private rental and lives an independent, fulfilling life.”

Upon completing a barista training course, assistance is available to improve job readiness skills, prepare resumes, interview techniques and applying for positions. For many of them, participation is the first step in empowering them to seek employment opportunities.

Dee Why RSL’s support has also contributed to having the kitchen remodelled, and this year the funds will be used for new gym equipment and art supplies. Many participants are involved in street art, and the program helps them to understand community concerns with graffiti, and how the use of street art is a respected art form in the correct location and space.

If you would like to find out more about Youth Reach, please contact the Manager at youthreach@vinnies.org.au.