Youth

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FleetPartners offers driving opportunities for youth

Burdekin Learning to Drive Program

The road to independence just got a little easier for our young people thanks to an incredible helping hand from FleetPartners and The Manly Warringah Sea Eagles. The Burdekin Association will now have the ability to provide more young people across the Northern Beaches and Inner West of Sydney with essential learn-to-drive hours and support.

We are thrilled with the news that FleetPartners have generously provided a dedicated vehicle for Burdekin’s existing learn-to-drive program, which to date, has relied on staff and volunteers lending their own vehicles.

Learning to drive is an important rite of passage for any young person – it provides the freedom and independence in social situations, for appointments and employment.

Julian Russell (Eclipx Group (FleetPartners) CEO) and Justene Gordon (The Burdekin Association CEO)

The Burdekin Association learn-to-drive program provides support and driving practice hours to young people living in out-of-home care without the family support required to complete driver training towards securing their licence.

Not only does the program provide essential driving hours and practice, important relationships are also developed between young people and volunteers, who become mentors, not just driving instructors.

“The road to independence is very challenging for young people in our out-of-home care and youth housing programs. This support from FleetPartners and the Sea Eagles allows us to provide more opportunities for young people to accumulate driving practice hours required to attain their licence and to progress on to employment,” said The Burdekin Association CEO, Justene Gordon.

“We’re proud community partners with the Sea Eagles and we thank the Club for their initiative in bringing FleetPartners together with our learn-to-drive program.”

An Eclipx Group business, FleetPartners is a strong contributor to the communities in which they operate. Providing a vehicle to The Burdekin Association learn-to-drive program is just one of many meaningful ways they contribute to the community.

“We are very proud to extend our support to The Burdekin Association. We recognise the important role a driver licence plays in providing independence, building confidence, improving employment prospects, and proving a pathway to financial stability for the young people participating in this program. This positive impact is why we’re so pleased to be involved,” said Eclipx Group (FleetPartners) CEO, Julian Russell.

To find out more about FleetPartners, visit fleetpartners.com.au.
To find out more about The Manly Warringah Sea Eagles please visit seaeagles.com.au

Reasons to consider Foster Care

Young people in need of homes

Right here, in Sydney, there are children and young people in need of a safe and stable home. A home could be provided by one person, two people or any existing family unit. Whether the home mimics a traditional family, or a non-traditional family type unit, is not as important as whether young people have a safe place and nurturing carers.

Could this be you?

Could you provide a safe, caring and nurturing environment to provide the foundation to overcome challenges in order for a young person to live their life to their full of potential? Could you experience the privilege of walking side by side a young person as they grow, as their personality begins to emerge, and they find their footing and grow in confidence?

As at June 2020, in Australia almost 46,000 children were in out-of-home care.

Being a Foster Carer with us

The children and young people in our care are considered ‘older’, as they are between the ages of 9 and 18, but most of our children and young people are teenagers. Embarking on a journey as a carer may appear challenging but it need not be, at Burdekin we are able to support you through your journey to becoming a carer and will walk alongside you each step of the journey. As a Burdekin Foster Carer you are part of a team. We don’t stop providing support following your initial training, our team provide ongoing, wrap-around support on an ongoing basis. This included post placement with a young person in care.

We would love to hear from you if you think you could provide a safe place for one of these young people – we can also support you with accommodation, if that may be a barrier to providing care for young people.

Children and young people who are in the Out of Home Care system have all come from “hard places”. They all have a history of trauma and broken attachments and that may mean that as a carer, you may need to learn to manage their big feelings and emotions with a little more skills and training, but we will be working alongside you to provide you with that support. Remember that older foster children and young people are just like any children and young people – in need of love, stability, and a secure home, to thrive. These bright individuals will have stuff to work through, building a connection may take a bit of time, but if you hang in there, you may get to see the walls come down as you learn more about them and they learn to trust you.

Are you a little bit curious about how it would work for you? Please chat to us and find out how it’s possible.

Get Fit for Homeless Youth – 30 day fitness challenge

PIF 30 Day Fitness Challenge

We have joined the fundraising efforts of the Property Industry Association (PIF) to fight youth homelessness with a 30 day fitness challenge which aims to raise $250,000 – will you support us?

Check out who of the Burdekin team has signed up for the PIF 30 Day Fitness Challenge, we would love it if you could support us! We have set a modest aim to raise $1,000, every single donation counts! And of course, we would like to overshoot the goal and contribute as much as possible to the overall goal.

About

PIF wish to raise $250,000 towards The Haven Project which includes the renovation of a house in Balgowlah into a new home for young people. You can read more about the project here: New Home in the Making and here: Haven House Balgowlah. We wanted to thank PIF so much for their efforts in getting this fundraiser off the ground for our project partners – SMLXL Projects, Bridge Housing and others, such an amazing community effort!

Burdekin are getting active in the name of team building, mental health, and physical health, but most importantly to Get Fit to For Homeless Youth.

#pif30daychallenge #getfitforhomelessyouth

Youth homelessness affects 44,000 young Australians, and each night, 1 in 3 young people are being turned away from supported accommodation services.

The Property Industry Foundation exists to solve this problem of youth homelessness. We bring together the property and construction industry to build homes for homeless youth through our Haven Project.

Every day for 30 days from 2 – 31 May, we are walking, running, cycling and everything in between to raise funds as we go – please support us!

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CREATE Case Worker Award Winner for NSW

We have award winning staff!

We have amazing news! Burdekin’s own Narelle Young has won the inaugural CREATE Case Worker Award! Narelle was nominated by one of the young people she supports. The CREATE award selects just one winner per state. We are very proud that Narelle has won in NSW!

Of course, we have known all along how amazing Narelle is – BUT this is wonderful personal recognition for her. We want to congratulate Narelle on this fantastic achievement and thank the young person who has spent the time to nominate her. Also, thanks to the CREATE Foundation for facilitating the conference and award.

The CREATE Foundation Voices in Action Conference was held from 26th – 29th April and featured the inaugural CREATE Case Worker Awards highlighting the appreciation of service and dedication by outstanding professionals in the child protection sector.

The announcements were made during the Closing Session on Day 2, 27 April 2022 with the Overall Australian Winner presented by the Governor-General of Australia, His Excellency General the Honourable David Hurley.

Here is Narelle’s acceptance speech:

A bit about the CREATE Case Worker Awards:

Behind the scenes, the awards are entirely led and coordinated by a group of passionate young people who know what a difference a great Case Worker can make. CREATE’s Case Worker Awards acknowledge excellence in casework for children and young people with care experience. Our Case Worker Advisory Group gathered nominations from across every state and territory in Australia.

CREATE said:

Congratulations on being an amazing role model and advocate for children and young people in out-of-home care. These awards are very special. It is the first time that we have held them, so you are a part of witnessing history in the making.

Many young people tell us how important their case workers are to them – a case worker who listens, understands, does what they said they’d do and is there for you when you need them can make the difference between a good experience within the care system and a bad one. We know that there are many great case workers – dedicated, hard-working, and really invested in helping children and young people, and we wanted to acknowledge their contribution.

Youth Homelessness Matters Day

Supporting young people experiencing or at risk of homelessness

Youth Homelessness Matters Day on April 20th, raises awareness about youth homelessness and advocates learning about and understanding youth homelessness, stimulates debate for change and advocates to support those who are currently experiencing homelessness.

Current stats:

Current statistics show, that on any given night, around 28,000 young people do not have a bed of their own to sleep in, they might be couch-surfing with mates, squeezing into crisis accommodation or sleeping on the streets – some people might not even recognise themselves they are indeed homeless.

From their information in the 2016 Census the ABS reported: On any given night in Australia 116,427 Australians are homeless. 27,680 of these are young people aged 12-24 years.

Regardless of what we might think, young people become homeless almost always due to no fault of their own. The main causes are family breakdown, domestic and family violence and the ongoing housing crisis.

The Youth Homelessness Matters Day campaign for 2022:

Their stories

Many of the young people who come to us have experienced multiple challenges in their short, young lives and we provide the support they need to reach their full potential.

At Burdekin, we believe every young person has the right to a life that offers opportunities to fulfil their potential. Many of our young people have gone on to have happy, healthy and successful lives because we were able to provide them with the support that they needed. You can read some of the stories from our young people here.

You can support our work in many different ways – in kind, in cash and in time. 

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