One hundred and forty young people have been referred into workplace opportunities one year after the NSW Police Commissioner launched the RISEUP strategy targeting disengaged youth across the state.
RISEUP was officially launched on Wednesday 8 August 2018 by NSW Police Commissioner Mick Fuller APM to prioritise youth engagement.
As part of the Commissioner’s strategy, RISEUP incorporates job ready programs, mentoring and vocational training for at risk youth aged between 15 and 18, to reengage young people with family and community, and in some cases divert them from criminal activity.
Since the program was launched last year, 140 young people have secured workplace opportunities, with 110 successfully retaining employment.
Of the 110 young people who have retained employment, 29 are female and 81 are male.
Employment opportunities range from full-time, part-time and casual work, to apprenticeships and traineeships.
Industries where employment opportunities have been secured include retail, hospitality, fitness/sport and recreation, office management and administration, local council, fast-food, various trades and entertainment.
Commissioner Fuller was joined by Minister for Police and Emergency Services, The Hon. David Elliott and PCYC NSW CEO Dominic Teakle, at Woolloomooloo PCYC this morning (Wednesday 14 August 2019), to thank employers and businesses for their support and dedication to the RISEUP strategy.
“It is with great pride that we are here today to celebrate the achievements of 140 young people who have been referred into employment since the RISEUP strategy was launched one year ago,” Commissioner Fuller said.
“NSW Police, together with the PCYC, have shown incredible initiative in reengaging with some of our state’s most vulnerable young people, helping them from heading down a less desirable path in life.
“It has always been a priority of mine to give the youth of NSW every possible opportunity to succeed, and sometimes traditional schooling simply isn’t the right place for someone to be.
“By partnering with a number of commercial and local businesses, we are helping our youth realise their true potential – and there really is no better reward than to see those people succeed,” Commissioner Fuller said.
Minister Elliott said the success of the RISEUP strategy is a testament to the hard work and dedication of police in improving the lives of young people across NSW.
“Keeping young people out of the juvenile justice system is another example of the excellent work NSW Police are doing to prevent and reduce crime across the state.
“This initiative not only helps to keep young people on the right side of the law – it also boosts the employment prospects of our youth,” Mr Elliott said.
The initiative has been operating state-wide in partnership with PCYC NSW and supported by a cornerstone funding grant from the Macquarie Group Foundation and a commitment to jobs and funding from Snowy Hydro.
PCYC NSW CEO Dominic Teakle said the suite of programs offered by the PCYC under the RISEUP strategy creates a place of belonging for young people.
“We are proud to partner with NSW Police in empowering the young people of NSW – and for many, RISEUP has already proved to be a positive and life-changing experience,” Mr Teakle said.
“Across the state we have 64 PCYC clubs engaging with youth every day, helping to break down the traditional barriers that exist between youth and police.
“The eight programs of the RISEUP strategy have been a game changer in youth engagement, targeting at risk youth and providing them with the guidance, support and skills to realise that they can make positive choices for the better.
“The momentum is building and with continued support we will encourage many more young people to seek out opportunities with PCYC and police in the years to come,” Mr Teakle said.
One of the program’s success stories, 17-year-old Eminem Miller, said the program has given him purpose in life.
“When I went to the PCYC, it struck me that I could get to know people my own age and achieve my goals, instead of lying in bed pretending to be sick to avoid school,” Eminem said.
“The opportunities I have had through the PCYC have been amazing – I found out who I am as a person, and how to overcome problems that I may be faced with – without them, I don’t think I would be the person I am today.
“I would encourage any young person to come to the PCYC and speak to the police, especially if you’re not happy at school or you’re having problems at home, as it really does become a second home,” Eminem said.
As operations under the Commissioner’s RISEUP strategy continue this year, the NSW Police Force is encouraging employers to consider the benefits of supporting disengaged young people.
Businesses and organisations that have joined the initiative include Macquarie Group, Snowy Hydro, Hyatt Regency Sydney, Gumnut Patisserie, Allianz, Steggles, Commonwealth Bank, Hungry Jacks, NSW TrainLink, IGA, Bunnings and TAFE NSW.
To become a participating business or for more information visit www.riseup.org.au.