Youth Minister Dave Kelly today announced a further $17.76 million of funding towards projects for WA youth as part of the WA Recovery Plan.
Young people in Western Australia have been disproportionately affected by COVID-19, and the McGowan Government has responded by investing in their recovery through a range of measures.
Social isolation and reduced connection to community, associated with the public health response of COVID-19, had a major impact on the mental health of vulnerable groups within our community – in particular our youth.
The McGowan Government’s youth-focused recovery package includes $25 million for a 16-bed mental health and alcohol and other drugs homelessness service in the metropolitan area for young people aged 16 to 24 years – recently announced.
WA youth will also be able to extend their employment opportunities and develop new skills through access to a range of free and discounted training courses, as well as additional funding for employers to take on apprentices and trainees who had their employment terminated due to the pandemic.
The recently announced Green Jobs Plan will provide additional job opportunities for young people through funding to non-government organisations such as Greening Australia.
The $17.76 million will be invested in new and existing youth support and community centres across the State.
These centres will provide young people with access to important services in their local communities and help build their resilience, as well as provide opportunities to come together to learn important life skills and participate in recreational activities.
Construction works on these centres are expected to create around 130 jobs and be a part of the WA Recovery Plan that will help drive WA’s economic and social recovery across the State.
WA Recovery Plan projects for youth will include:
- $3 million for a youth centre in Madeley;
- $4.9 million for revitalisation of Ern Halliday Recreation Camp – including upgrade of camp accommodation and dining facilities, and improvements of asset sustainability across the camps network;
- $1.86 million for the Ellenbrook Youth Centre; and
- $8 million for additional multipurpose youth and community infrastructure.
These centres will provide a connection to the community and access to services close to home, as well as the essential tools that WA youth need to assist them on the road to recovery.
As stated by Youth Minister Dave Kelly:
“WA youth have been significantly impacted by COVID-19, from the lack of social interaction and increased mental health issues to the considerable job losses experienced by young people during the pandemic.
“This funding will assist young people to access the services and support they need, and help them deal with some of the big challenges they face particularly at this time.
“These centres will provide a place for youth to connect with their local community, and the many benefits from social interaction and recreational activities they offer.”