Sir David Martin Foundation today announced the creation of a National Youth Network of Aftercare workers, to help break the cycle of addiction and connect more young people with community, education and employment pathways.
In partnership with Mission Australia and based on an evidence-based model of care at Triple Care Farm, in NSW Southern Highlands, Aftercare programs will be expanded to another four youth residential rehabilitation sites across the country (Perth, Coffs Habour, Dubbo and Batemans Bay)
Drug and Alcohol Youth Services (DAYS) in Perth is the first location thanks to the support of the Minderoo Foundation, McCusker Foundation and the Neilson Foundation.
Aftercare is recommended as an effective wraparound program and is fundamental to vulnerable young people’s ongoing health and wellness. The program is designed to empower and build independence to transition young people back into the community post rehabilitation. When a young person is in Residential Rehabilitation they set their goals and meet their Aftercare worker. By the time they finish the program three months later, they have a trusted support network to allow them to re-enter society reducing the threat of relapse
By having access to a youth worker to support their connection with family, community, re-engagement with education and preparation for employment, they are set up for a better future.
“The DAYS program is the only youth-specific residential rehabilitation program in Western Australia and Aftercare will help address the current crisis that exists for young people with drug and alcohol addiction, many as young as 12 years” said Helen Connealy, General Manager of Sir David Martin Foundation.
“Our collaborative network aims to create a systemic change, breaking the cycle of addiction and setting young people up for success.”
The Foundation invests $50,000 to help a young person get well through residential Withdrawal and Rehabilitation programs. It only costs another $4,000 to provide six months of Aftercare to the young person to avoid the cycle of addiction. This keeps them safe and allows them to reach their goals of stable housing and pathways to education and employment.
An independent evaluator will work across the five sites to assess the impact and efficacy of the network over three years and a report on the Youth Network expansion will be published in 2024.