This year Victorian Youth Week takes place from 26 June – 2 July 2021.
This week is all about celebrating and acknowledging the skills and contributions of young people.
As an organisation that supports youth development, we aim to celebrate and acknowledge young people not just this week, but everyday. We aim to do this by partnering with like organisations and working directly with young people to help them achieve their aspirations and goals.
One of the more recent collaborations that Anchor contributed to was the Developing Independence Program.
This collaboration developed partly from information that arose from The Yarra Ranges Youth Homelessness Prevention Project 2015, to which Anchor was a critical contributor. This project indicated that ‘Young people begin to experience homelessness while they are still attending school. The availability of school-based services and external supports that ensure continuity of schooling and a safe environment during this time is vital’. It was identified in the 2016 census that there were a significant amount of young people who were experiencing increasing stress with stable housing and therefore increased challenges with accessing education in the Yarra Ranges.
Anchor’s long-standing relationship with Cire led to a collaboration where we were able to use of a Cire property to successfully deliver the Developing Independence program. Anchor’s Youth Development Services run a youth Foyer program that supports young people who are at risk of or experiencing homelessness and support them for two years with stable accommodation and life skills development.
Two young women from the Yarra Ranges moved into the Yarra Junction property in 2019. This was an amazing opportunity for them both to remain in their community and continue with their education while still being connected to friends, family, employment and recreation.
One young person was able to continue with her education, maintain her part-time job, acquire her licence and purchase a car. The other young person was able to support her family and continue with her education and employment. Both have now successfully moved into private rental with the support of Anchor’s Creating Connections program.
During the two-year period both girls completed a Certificate one with Box Hill Institute in Developing Independence. The certificate enables the young people in YDS at Anchor to work one on one with a youth development coach to explore their talents and strengths and plan educational and employment pathways while also planning and achieving personal goals.
Anchor and the young people are extremely grateful to Cire for the opportunity to stay connected to community, while being able to experience living in such a beautiful home.
This Youth Week, we hope to continue creating new and exciting opportunities for young people to thrive and showcase their talents. Anchor will be holding a number of Life Skills workshops such as woodwork projects and gardening, that will be run by young people for young people. The aim of these workshops is to allow young people to share their skills with others and discover new pathways of utilising these skills in real life as well as having a little bit of fun along the way!
Be sure to follow our Facebook page for all updates on Youth Week and the creative results of the workshops.