NSW Police Commissioner Mick Fuller APM is taking a new approach to youth engagement, today launching a strategy to connect disengaged youth to employment opportunities and support services.
As part of the Commissioner’s strategy to prioritise youth engagement, RISEUP incorporates job ready programs, mentoring and vocational training for at risk youth aged between 15 and 18 to divert them from criminal activity.
Commissioner Fuller was joined by NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian, Minister for Police Troy Grant, and PCYC NSW CEO Dominic Teakle, to launch RISEUP at Woolloomooloo PCYC this morning (Wednesday 8 August 2018).
“It has been my long-held view that by investing in preventative strategies with our young people, we can save a generation of children from a life of crime,” Commissioner Fuller said.
“RISEUP is breaking through barriers to engage our vulnerable young people from heading down a less desirable path in life and giving them a career start, which is a priority of mine.
“Importantly, employment gives our youth a sense of achievement, pride and structure they might not be getting in a traditional family environment and it’s humbling to know we have some of the country’s biggest businesses standing beside us to support our future leaders.”
Premier Berejiklian said the government is proud to support the initiative and keep disengaged young people on the right side of the law.
“This is an outstanding initiative that will build on the excellent work NSW Police are doing to reduce crime across the state, while further boosting the employment prospects of young people,” Ms Berejiklian said.
Minister Grant said RISEUP demonstrates another way NSW Police are proactively reducing crime.
“The program has the potential to be a life-changing opportunity for young people who are in danger of heading down the wrong path,” Mr Grant said.
The initiative will operate state-wide in partnership with PCYC NSW supported by a cornerstone funding grant from the Macquarie Group Foundation and a commitment to jobs and funding from Snowy Hydro.
“PCYC is a proud partner in the delivery of this program and it sits at the head of what PCYC stands for – empowerment of young people,” Mr Teakle said.
One of the program’s success stories, 18-year-old Jacob Riordan, escaped a life of crime and violence.
“I’m sharing my story because there’s kids out there going down the same path and now they have a chance,” Jacob said.
“Any other kid, young or older, don’t give up. There’s always someone out there to help you.”
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, 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.