The Youth Space has never been very good at sitting on its “laurels” and just doing what we’re funded to do. Our history shows that we’ll always be responsive to community need because often, that need surpasses what a community organisation is funded to do. At times like that you just knuckle down and do it and hope the money turns up. When you’re committed to your community, you go that “extra mile” when you can and you do what you can.
In keeping with that philosophy, we’ve just launched two brand new projects: the SAFE PLACES project and the PARENTS SUPPORT GROUP.
The SAFE PLACES Project
This project is a direct response to recent issues of violence in the Humpybong park precinct. The Youth Space works very closely with the Child Protection and Investigation Unit of the Redcliffe Police, and together we try and develop responses that will keep young people safe.
As some of you reading this will know, there was a stabbing at the Redcliffe skate park a few weeks ago and that incident involved two 16 year old girls. It happened late of at night on a weekend, and we opened early the very next day to provide immediate crisis support to our young people the moment we found out about it. For that entire week we spent a lot of time supporting young people and some of their families, and a lot of time working with the Police to determine what the best course of action should be. We determined it was time to rehash an old project we ran back in 2010 called “The Hope Project” and to provide an increased presence in the park area of a Friday night. The “Hope Project” was about three things:
1. Stopping incidents of violence against young people by adult pub goers after dark (there had been a number of reports of adults assaulting young people in the skate park at that time, and we were determined to stop that – and did);
2. Supporting young people who were homeless and in need of assistance of a Friday night;
3. Supporting young people to make better choices around certain risk taking behaviours like alcohol consumption and drug use.
Our new take on our old program deserved a new name, because although it’s similier to what we designed back in 2010 it is different. We decided to call it SAFE PLACES because that’s what it is about. Creating a safe place for young people of a Friday night. It’s pretty similar to our old “Hope Project” in that it uses the exact same intervention, but its goals are slightly different:
1. Stop incidents of violence between young people of a Friday night;
2. Empower young people to make better choices around resolving conflict and other issues that create tension amongst teenagers and young adults;
3. Provide a safe place for young people to relax and enjoy the company of their peers;
4. Address some of the choices young people are making around drug and alcohol use;
5. Determine who is supplying alcohol to our kids and stop them.
The project is run by the Youth Space and supported by the Redcliffe PCYC, the Child Protection and Investigation Unit, Chameleon Housing and the Churches of Christ Queensland.
The PARENTS SUPPORT GROUP:
This project was the idea of a local parent, Joanne, who felt parents needed somewhere to go and someone to turn to for advice when their kids made not so good choices. She wasn’t sure where to turn for help, so started up a support group for local Redcliffe Peninsula parents who, like here, were upset and anxious about their teenagers. It ended up being pretty popular.
Joanne called us and asked if we would be a part of it and we gave her a resounding yes.
The PARENTS SUPPORT PROJECT meets every second Monday, with the next meeting being Monday the 10th of June at 6:30pm here at the Youth Space.
The PARENTS SUPPORT PROJECT isn’t about teaching parents how to parent. There are enough of those programs around. It’s a support group. It’s about giving parents a place to come, talk about what is happening to them, and support each other in a safe and inclusive environment. The added benefit of having it at the Youth Space is that the parents have access to Youth Workers who can tell them about options available to them and give them some hints and tips on certain issues. People often think we’re just here for the kids of our community who are in trouble, but we’re also here for their parents and work with a lot of parents every year.
The other benefit is that we’re also able to organise guest speakers to come along and impart some wisdom to the parents who attend.
Some examples of upcoming guest speakers are a teenage development expert who works with us, Youth Justice, Chameleon Housing and other youth specific services. A lawyer who can talk to parents about THEIR rights. We’re also negotiating around getting some drug and alcohol specialists in to let parents know about the drugs their teenagers are taking. There will be more guest speakers as they program goes on, these are just a few examples.
This is a program we’re very happy to be a part of.
For either program, if you want more information either check out our facebook page or the programs section of this site, or give us a call on 3283 8769.
For the SAFE PLACES PROJECT, ask to speak to Jarryd our CEO.
For the PARENTS SUPPORT GROUP, ask to speak to Amylee our Crime Prevention Officer.