Empowering Communities to Support Young Victorians

5 April 2022

The Andrews Labor Government is working with grassroots organisations to give young people more chances to connect with their communities through the new Youth Engagement Grants.

Member for Narre Warren South Gary Maas MP, today announced that Multicultural Youth Support Services Incorporated (MYSS) would be one of the 19 organisations which have been selected to develop initiatives to empower and support young people in their communities.

The MYSS project is aiming to expand an existing after-hours program including a homework club and basketball club in the City of Casey for African-Australian young people and their parents to strengthen connection to peers, family, and school.

The Youth Engagement Grants will provide $1.7 million in funding over two grant rounds, with up to $50,000 per grant for small multicultural and Aboriginal clubs and community organisations to support young people aged 8 - 24 years. 

The grants help address the root causes of crime, giving communities the ability to intervene early, helping teenagers build positive lives for themselves.

Social isolation has been raised by young people through the Andrews Labor Government’s Empowering Communities program, through which local communities build crime prevention projects.

Community empowerment and partnerships are a key focus of the government’s Crime Prevention Strategy, which recognises that each community has the expertise, knowledge, and ideas to design solutions that are right for them.

Investment in the Youth Engagement grants is part of a broader $30 million investment from the 2020-21 and 2021-22 State Budgets to deliver the Victorian Government’s Crime Prevention Strategy.

For more information visit www.crimeprevention.vic.gov.au/youthengagementgrants

Quotes attributable to Minister for Crime Prevention, Natalie Hutchins:

“We know that disconnection and social isolation can drive young people away from their communities and towards riskier behaviour.”

“But we also know that grassroots organisations have the skills, knowledge and expertise to address the root causes of crime, which is why we’re partnering with local groups to build a safer Victoria for all.”

Quotes attributable to Member for Narre Warren South Gary Maas MP:

“The work of Multicultural Youth Support Services is essential for many young people in Casey and this support should see them able to expand their services to reach even more youths and their families.”

“The Andrews Labor Government is looking to provide young Victorians with more pathways, support, and options to pursue that will ensure they have positive outcomes and successful lives.”

“Grassroot organisations are integral to the wellbeing of our youth and community. It’s fantastic to see them being recognised and supported so they can continue their invaluable work.”