The NSW Government will work closely with young people and the youth services sector to ensure that valuable funding grants meet the needs of the state‟s children and young people.
Minister for Citizenship and Communities Victor Dominello MP, who has responsibility for Youth Affairs, said in-depth consultation will take place over the next two months as part of a comprehensive state-wide review of the Better Futures grants program.
“A number of concerns have been raised, including the ambiguous criteria for funding. To continue helping young people with the greatest need, this program will be examined and the way forward shaped by genuine input from the youth sector.
“I have asked the Office of Communities to formally liaise with the Youth Action and Policy Association (YAPA), the Youth Advisory Council, young people and the broader youth sector to seek their views on how to make Better Futures the best it can be.
“Over the coming weeks, key stakeholders will be directly contacted by the Office of Communities and there are a range of other ways in which people can have their say.
“The Office of Communities and YAPA will jointly host a public forum on 20 July in Sydney and there will be an online forum at the www.youth.nsw.gov.au website.
“In addition, the Youth Advisory Council will host a Facebook forum from mid July to early August.
“It‟s a great way for young people to share their views with Government.”
Mr Dominello said he wants to engage with young people and ensure that their views are heard.
“The days of just “tick the box” consultation are over – we need real dialogue and real involvement,” he said.
“The NSW Liberals and Nationals social policy framework – “Smarter, Stronger, Healthier, Safer” – sets out a whole-of-government approach to the delivery of social policy based on a clear set of principles.
“Prevention, a commitment to openness, the right of the individual to make informed choices and the value of local processes and partnerships – these are the principles on which we have based our approach to youth affairs.
“I look forward to receiving lots of feedback on the work that needs to be done and this information will guide the future direction of the Better Futures program.
“Together I think we can make a real difference for young people in this state.”