Youth Opportunities was awarded one of two $100,000 grants from Impact 100 in May last year and such a significant grant made it possible for us to launch the Youth Empowerment South East, or YES, Project. This meant we could partner with four new schools – Mount Gambier High School, Allendale East Area School, Grant and Millicent High Schools – to deliver our Personal Leadership Program across South East SA for the first time. It’s been a huge success and we were pleased to see 93 South East students graduate from our program by the end of the year.
Young people play a major role in regional communities and this grant meant Youth Opportunities could invest into the South East community, including creating two new jobs in the region. We’ve also recently set up a local Community Development Group – essentially, a committee made up of community members who actively support our training and our goals.
The Community Development Group is familiar with our Personal Leadership Program, understanding how it can really change lives, helping us draw attention to our work and investing in bettering the futures of the South East’s young people. In 2018, we will continue to increase our focus on regional areas: supporting growth and accessibility; upskilling community-based trainers and educators, and engaging the community in the success of our graduating students.
“Youth Opportunities has changed our school community. Since the program, our students have become more engaged and are more optimistic about their futures. They are more proactive and have a stronger sense of belonging” Mount Gambier High School teacher.