Building Communities17 Jan 2023

Evidence-based Aftercare program for vulnerable youth expands to Perth

Sir David Martin Foundation is expanding an evidence-based youth Aftercare program to Perth thanks to the support of the Minderoo Foundation, McCusker Foundation, and the Neilson Foundation.

Sir David Martin Foundation
Sir David Martin Foundation is expanding its Aftercare program to Perth with the support of the Minderoo Foundation. Photo Credit: Sir David Martin Foundation.

Aftercare was developed as an effective wraparound program at the renowned Triple Care Farm in the New South Wales Southern Highlands, run by Mission Australia and funded by Sir David Martin Foundation. It is designed to empower and build independence for young people to transition back into the community post drug and alcohol rehabilitation.

Aftercare’s evidence-based model will now be expanded to Drug and Alcohol Youth Services (DAYS) in East Perth as well as Mission Australia sites in Coffs Harbour, Dubbo, and Batemans Bay.

Perth will be part of a National Youth Network of Aftercare workers to help break the cycle of addiction and connect more young people with community, education, and employment pathways.

The Director of Minderoo Foundation’s Building Communities initiative, Louise Olney, said Minderoo Foundation is deeply committed to ensuring young people in Western Australia have access to the support they need to stay healthy.

“Sir David Martin Foundation is a highly respected organisation that delivers extremely good outcomes for young people and communities, so we are very pleased to support this program and bring it to Western Australia.

“I would also like to thank the McCusker Foundation and the Neilson Foundation for their support,” she said.

Through the Aftercare program, a young person in residential rehabilitation can set their goals and meet an Aftercare worker. By the time they finish the program three months later, they have a trusted support network to allow them to re-enter society, reducing the threat of relapse.

An independent evaluator will work across the sites to assess the impact and efficacy of the Aftercare network over three years and a report on the Youth Network expansion will be published in 2025.

Helen Connealy, General Manager of Sir David Martin Foundation, said the DAYS program is the only youth-specific residential rehabilitation program in Western Australia.

“Aftercare will help address the current crisis that exists for young people with drug and alcohol addiction, many as young as 12 years old.

“In partnership with Mission Australia, our collaborative network aims to create a systemic change, breaking the cycle of addiction and setting young people up for success,” she said.

Minderoo Foundation
by Minderoo Foundation

Established by Andrew and Nicola Forrest in 2001, we are a modern philanthropic organisation seeking to break down barriers, innovate and drive positive, lasting change. Minderoo Foundation is proudly Australian, with key initiatives spanning from ocean research and ending slavery, to collaboration in cancer and community projects.

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