As we head into 2023 what better time to give an update on our Youth Opportunities training team and our school partners?
In what is shaping up to be yet another exciting year, during Term 1 the dedicated and hardworking team will be delivering 9 personal leadership programs supporting up to 180 young people. Our goal this year is to deliver 70 programs in partnership with secondary schools across SA, which will enable at least 2,000 young people scheduled to graduate from our programs and wrap-around services this year. This number includes participants from all our face-to-face and online personal leadership programs. We are well on our way already to achieving this goal and we look forward to updating you on our program reach throughout the year.
It is our school partners who enable us to work with their young people each year and we would like to express a warm welcome to our new schools this year as well as our returning schools in Term 1 and thank them for choosing to work with us;
- Paralowie R-12 School
- Playford International College
- Salisbury High School
- Woodville High School
- Birdwood High School
- Clare High School
- Whyalla Secondary College
- Millicent High School (SE)
- Eastern Fleurieu High School
- Parafield Gardens High School
- Craigmore High School
- Salisbury High School
- Salisbury East High School
With the support of funding from the Federal Emerging Priorities Program, our team has begun to review and develop our delivery models to enable the scaling of our services nationally. This work focuses on developing resources to support and build the skills of program facilitators to maintain fidelity, while creating a model that is adaptive and sustainable. Piloting of these models will begin interstate in term 2 and we will share more as this exciting project progresses.
“Whilst challenging, this is a great time for the organisation to grow, reaching interstate to increase the program and allow more young people the opportunity to become personal leaders of their own lives.”
Larry Waller – Head of Training
This year the training team has introduced and begun rolling out the first Activate Personal Leadership Program. The program supports young people to find a positive future path. These young people may have experienced extra challenges in their lives that have created obstacles to their success. Delivered across an entire semester the Activate Personal Leadership Program works with young people over a longer period to build relationships, develop skills and continually empower the groups.
“The program aims for young people to positively engage with people, education and their communities. We are currently working with 5 schools in the northern suburbs, co-facilitating alongside teachers, youth workers and wellbeing staff to foster greater impact. We aim to build capacity amongst our school counterparts and share the goals of relationship-building and accountability for program success.”
Stephen Sverchek – Projects Lead
This term we are busy recruiting new trainers so that more programs can be delivered to more young people and we look forward to our new starters joining us in the coming months. Additionally, thanks to our great relationship with the University of South Australia, we have four social work placement students working with us. All our new team members bring a fresh outlook and approach, and we are pleased that they can share their experience and knowledge across Youth Opportunities and with participants of our programs.
Whilst we are growing our team to support the increase in our programs, we are also investing in our existing staff to ensure that we maintain the quality of the programs that we are delivering and continue to meet the needs of the young people we work with.
“This year I am most excited to see some of the new tools and methods for delivering our program in the classroom. We are working behind the scenes to ensure our tools and delivery methods are meeting the needs of young people and have developed some really engaging and relevant ways of delivering our existing tools in a new way. I look forward to seeing how the young people engage with them.“
Nina Williams – Program Development & Quality Assurance Lead
In January our Training Delivery Lead Nedge delivered Youth Mental Health First Aid training to 12 program trainers, and our CE Erin, which was a great success.
“Youth Opportunities is all about putting Young People at the centre of all that we do, and in January we delivered the Youth Mental Health First Aid course to 12 of our Staff. Youth Mental Health First Aid is an education course that teaches adults about adolescent development and the signs and symptoms of common and disabling mental health problems in young people, including crisis situations. This course is enabling our staff to be more aware of what might be happening for a young person when engaging with our amazing program and how to best support them to thrive.”
Nedge Sinanovski – Training delivery lead
Whilst, as an organisation want to reach as many young people as possible, and we know our programs are beneficial for all young people, in 2023 we are continuing to focus on targeting index 1, 2 and 3 schools in both regional and metro regions to ensure our states most marginalised young people can access and benefit from our services.
We have partnered with 29 schools this year and currently have 3 new schools coming on board in 2023;
- Underdale High School
- Goolwa Secondary College
- Loxton High School