Townsville Bulletin – 5 March 2013

Plan helps teens turn their lives around

A TOWNSVILLE charity is hoping new funding will help stop first- time offenders from falling into a life of crime.

Northern non- profit organisation Queensland Youth Services will run two early- intervention programs starting in April to help young people at risk of becoming recidivist offenders.

Chief executive Wendy Lang said she hoped the programs, which have been financed by a $ 10,000 grant from Suncorp Insurance and the Queensland Police Service, would pave the way for future programs that could one day be funded as part of the State Government’s boot camp initiative, which is currently in trial stages.

‘‘ It’s essential to get ( juvenile offenders) at an early stage,’’ she said. ‘‘ Otherwise they fall into a pattern and we’re hoping to break that pattern before it starts.’’

She said the two programs would each include 12 mostly male offenders aged between 12 and 15.

She said the 12- week program would include a camp, mentoring and interaction with victims through either face- to- face sessions or victim impact statements.

‘‘ There will be some cultural activities and some outdoor survival activities and the emphasis is about trying to get them to look at how to change their lives,’’ she said.

‘‘ We want to address the cause and focus on that . . . rather than just the symptoms. These kids come from complex backgrounds.’’

QYS will be hosting a fundraiser event at Event Cinemas at the Townsville premiere of Oz the Great and Powerful this Thursday night.

For tickets and more information visit qys. org. au

Posted: 

  • 5 Mar 2013
  • Townsville Bulletin
  • Kate Higgins