Shire urged to support Wonthaggi youth

BASS Coast Shire Council was urged to support the Wonthaggi youth hub at Wednesday’s community connection session.
In particular, council was asked to continue to fund the employment of a coordinator to guide the development of the project.
YMCA youth hub project coordinator Michael Feehan said Wonthaggi’s young people are crying out for their own space.
As much as the hub would be a social space, it would also provide young people with the services they need in areas like health, education and employment.
“For young people, there is a disconnect between what is available to them and their understanding of what is available,” Mr Feehan said.
“We aim to practically address these issues at a site that is visible to young people, ideally located near the (Wonthaggi) secondary college.”
Wonthaggi youth Nick Gartland reported feeling isolated growing up in town due to the stigma surrounding young people.
“My friends and I felt we were not accepted by older people. We’d have to meet at each other’s houses because we had nowhere else to go, but not everyone feels comfortable or welcome in other people’s homes,” he said.
“When I was finishing school, I was at the point where I wanted to leave Wonthaggi. There didn’t seem like there were any work or education options for me here. I would’ve loved the opportunity to go to a youth hub and see there are options out there.”
Anglicare youth worker Emily Jolly said the main hang out spots for Wonthaggi youths were the library and McDonalds, but often they felt judged and criticised there.
She said the youth hub would help to inspire creativity and individuality in a safe space, and would help to reduce the stigma of youth on the streets.
While council could not make any decisions on the day, councillors will have time to consider its options in the lead up to the 2018/19 budget.

Supporting youth: YMCA youth hub project coordinator Michael Feehan, Anglicare youth worker Emily Jolly, team leader of special youth services Jasmine Furphy and Wonthaggi youth Nick Gartland want to see local young people backed by a youth hub in Wonthaggi.

Short URL: http://thestar.com.au/?p=24728

Posted by on Apr 17 2018. Filed under Community. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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