Reaching out to help youth in Lakemba

Posted on Wednesday, 29 November 2017

Youth Off The Streets has used a $15,560 Canterbury donation to connect and interact with young adults in Lakemba through their ‘Lakemba Youth Matters’ program.

“Through our street outreach activities in Lakemba, we are encountering young people with increasingly complex needs, including homelessness, domestic violence, and substance abuse,” said Daniel O’Keeffe, Marketing Manager for Youth Off The Streets.

Aside from supporting case workers conducting street outreach activities in Lakemba and surrounding areas, the funding has also gone towards a youth camp and a boxing program to promote healthy exercise.

“The camp was very successful and the 10 young people involved learned a lot about themselves and each other. They completed tasks and had experiences completely new to them and they displayed a great willingness to learn and behaved very well for the entire camp,” said Daniel.

“The key challenge YOTS faced was actually being able to work with the youth in Lakemba. Before we received the grant [from Canterbury], we were only able to reach them through street work and casework despite requests to offer more. Now we’re able to offer the services that young people were requesting and take a proactive approach to helping young people in Lakemba.”

“Canterbury has been a long-time supporter of Fr Chris Riley and his amazing work in Youth Off The Street to form meaningful relationships with disconnected youth in our community. They provide access to free recreation and sports programs in a safe space, and links to career training and educational opportunities which is vital to positively facilitate at-risk youth back into the community,” said Dr George Peponis OAM, Chairman of Canterbury League Club.