25.9 C
Byron Shire
April 11, 2021

Youth service struggles with funding cuts

Latest News

A win for the roughy

The battle for the 'roughy had been a tough road for conservationists and hopefully this win will be the last fight.

Other News

Lilac house bound by red tape

Mullumbimby resident Nicole Haberecht is facing a $3,000 fine and the prospect of repainting her house after Council made a demand that she change the colour after it was painted a shade of lilac.

Women’s rights focus at Renew Fest

Two further headlining guests have been announced for Renew Fest, which describes itself as a ‘festival of full system...

Character test for PM without much

Over Easter I visited a friend who’s spent decades doing her best to protect old growth forests, preserve human connection with nature in the raw and help save our planet from the climate emergency.

Interview with DeeBee Bishop

Thirst is the story of Stan Adams, as told by Deebee Bishop. He was one of six housemates who lived with Stan in a broken-down share house when he’d walked away from his life to live rough. Decades later, Deebee tells the story.

Council crews working hard to repair potholes

Tweed Shire Council road maintenance crews are out across the Tweed's road network repairing potholes and other damage caused by the recent prolonged rainfall and previous flood events.

Waking up with a sick feeling in my gut

Horst Tietze, Mullumbimby Thank you to Mandy Nolan for publishing her courageous account of growing up as a young woman...

Paul Spooner
Paul Spooner

Eve Jeffery

It’s no secret that the Byron Youth Service is struggling after government cuts and reallocation of grants away from the Byron Shire.

Former director of the service and current Labor state candidate Paul Spooner feels that the problem goes deeper than funds management.

‘The current federal and state government is hell-bent on destroying small, local community-based organisations like BYS’, says Mr Spooner. ‘Their main focus is cost cutting and not ensuring quality program delivery and services to disadvantaged young people.

‘This is the logical result of cutting public service positions. The government needs to rationalise services because they don’t have the employees to manage funded programs so their preference is to fund large regional and national ­organisations.’

The Links to Learning program is one of the main projects lost, which will see youth at risk of leaving school or missing the chance to enter the workforce successfully.

‘Young people who access Links to Learning Community Grants Projects in 2015 will do so as a student enrolled in a government school’, says an Education Department spokesperson. ‘Arrangements for participation in projects are negotiated between the participating school and the organisation.’

The department received 266 applications from 112 not-for-profit, community-based organisations and local government authorities for the 2015–2016 Links to Learning Community Grants Program funding cycle.

The department says it ‘is responsible for the education of compulsory aged students and we do not assume the responsibility for those young people who have left school and are no longer engaged in education.’

Director of the BYS Jonathan Edwards has confirmed that BYS has received a further four months funding for their Youth Enterprise program to June 2015. The BYS is looking increasingly towards a fickle and depleted private sector for help.

‘We have witnessed this in the recent funding cuts to organisations delivering emergency relief in the area like the Byron Community Centre’, says Spooner. ‘This approach is destroying all the good work built up by our local community over the last 30 years and is inefficient and short sighted.’

The team from Byron Bay Bunnings, sent to spruce up the Youth Activity Centre, which has been struggling following recent funding cuts.
The team from Byron Bay Bunnings, sent to spruce up the Youth Activity Centre, which has been struggling following recent funding cuts.

Bunnings lends a hand

Fortunately, some private-sector help has emerged for the service, with a new business in town offering help to repaint the Youth Activity Centre, so it can be rented out for birthday parties and special events.

Local Bunnings staff, with a hand from Dulux Paints, descended on the YAC in Gilmore Crescent and now it is repainted and ready for action.

Chairs and tables that have been donated will enable the YAC to offer space at reasonable rates for events including 18th birthday parties, workshops, programs and conferences.

The money generated from these events will go back into BYS to support youth programs including Events Management, Hospitality, Street Cruise, Case Management and individual support.

 


Support The Echo

Keeping the community together and the community voice loud and clear is what The Echo is about. More than ever we need your help to keep this voice alive and thriving in the community.

Like all businesses we are struggling to keep food on the table of all our local and hard working journalists, artists, sales, delivery and drudges who keep the news coming out to you both in the newspaper and online. If you can spare a few dollars a week – or maybe more – we would appreciate all the support you are able to give to keep the voice of independent, local journalism alive.

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Maybe Canberra needs a bit of distraction biff

Mick breathed in but his Cronulla Sharks football jersey struggled to contain his well-insulated six-pack and he held up his hand as he approached Bazza in the front bar of the Top Pub.

Council crews working hard to repair potholes

Tweed Shire Council road maintenance crews are out across the Tweed's road network repairing potholes and other damage caused by the recent prolonged rainfall and previous flood events.

Poor Pauline

Bob Vinnicombe, Sefton A lot of hypocrisy from Labor and The Greens about respect for women. Look at the treatment they dished out to Pauline...

New film celebrates getting back outside

'Free From Lockdown: Back Out in Nature' is a new short film in which a group of disabled and non-disabled performers from the Northern Rivers celebrate being in nature after COVID lockdown.