Empowering youth program

Article image - Empowering youth program Empower Youth Engagement worker, Ash Mason helps young people reengage with the community.

Swan Hill Rural City Council, Victoria, recently appointed Empower Youth Engagement Worker, Ashlee Mason to work with young people who are disengaged or at risk of disengaging from family, education and/or community.

Council’s Empower Youth Program strives to connect disadvantaged young people to opportunities to allow them to develop and grow.

Mason said the program empowers young people to engage with a support worker to determine a pathway to achieve their goals.

“Pathways are developed in partnership with other service providers to address, stabilise and overcome any barriers to future success.”

Mason’s role focuses predominantly on outreach to young people aged 12-25 years in Robinvale, Manangatang and surrounds.

“I want to strengthen the health and wellbeing of young people, promote their participation in the community, engage them in education and training and facilitate employment pathways for them.

“Goals can range from obtaining a learner’s permit to seeking mental health support.

“We work in conjunction with other services to ensure consistent and relevant support for each young person.”

Mason said to play a small part in supporting a young person to build skills and strategies to work toward their ideal life was a privilege.

“It’s also a wonderful reminder that we possess all we need to fulfil our goals but with a little extra help we can get there and beyond.

“My aim is to provide a service that reminds young people of their incredible skills, qualities and abilities and build their capacity to utilise what they already possess and work toward their happiest and
healthiest self.”