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Article summaries

Youth Studies Australia
Volume 29 Number 3
September 2010

Reflections on case management in youth support using a program example

Rosemary Kennedy and Barry Kennedy 

Using Moxley’s (1997) program development framework as an agenda for a dialogue that juxtaposes an academic perspective with that of a seasoned youth program manager, this paper focuses on the relatively unexplored terrain of case management programs. In doing so, it exposes the convergences and divergences between academic and program manager perceptions of the issues of importance in case management service with young people. The paper identifies barriers to and necessary conditions for the development and maintenance of quality service delivery in youth support programs. It concludes with a shared view on the importance and feasibility of good case management programs in the contemporary service environment. 

Apprentices’ mentoring relationships

The role of ‘significant others’ and supportive relationships across the work–life domains

Tim Corney and Karin du Plessis

A study of 106 male apprentices working in the building and construction industry examined the occurrence of mentoring relationships. The results indicate that apprentices identify a range of mentors in their lives, predominantly in their personal lives, and that the majority of these relationships develop organically. In particular, apprentices value the psychosocial support that these mentoring relationships provide. Findings from the study support an expanded definition of mentoring to include significant others. Recommendations include encouraging the development of young working men’s social networks as a key factor in promoting social support and increasing apprentice retention.

Development and evaluation of a pilot filmmaking project for rural youth with a serious mental illness

Candice Boyd

Six young people from the Grampians region of Victoria who had serious mental illnesses took part in a creative arts project that taught them filmmaking skills and techniques over a five-week period. The project was evaluated using a mixed-method approach. Statistically significant improvements were found in quality of life and social connectedness, post-program. Interviews revealed that participants benefited through increased social connections, increased motivation and confidence, increased insight and community awareness, and the development of new skills. This project indicates the potential for filmmaking to engage rural youth with serious mental illnesses in an activity that has a range of benefits for the process of recovery.

How are young people’s experiences of ‘home’ affecting their engagement with schooling and community?

Paula Rowe and Harry Savelsberg

Little consideration has been given to the influence of housing tenure on young people’s developmental pathways. This paper draws on empirical findings from research conducted in the northern suburbs of Adelaide in 2009 to highlight how secure and quality housing tenure, when combined with familial support and positive relationships with teachers and peers, can support schooling and community engagement. The implications of these findings are significant in terms of informing Australian youth policy, especially school retention policies. The findings also highlight the need for housing policies (affecting young people) to recognise the tremendous impact that housing tenure can have on young people’s social transitions.

New housing, old places

Young people’s perceptions of place in urban fringe areas

Belinda Robson

There is a growing body of work on understanding child-friendly communities; however, up until now, research on urban fringe communities in Australia has not considered how young people experience the relationship between new and old communities or its potential to create a social dynamic that informs how young people see themselves and their community. This article suggests that young people have distinctive ways of perceiving changes occurring in their area, which can be missed in discussions of place and planning. By drawing on qualitative research in Craigieburn and Mernda, two outer suburbs in Melbourne’s north, the author offers insights into some of the themes that impact on how young people perceive their place on the urban fringe.

Government, schools, young people and communities in partnership

Robyn Broadbent and Theo Papadopoulos

Advance is a flexible, school-based program that provides young people with the opportunity to volunteer or implement a project of benefit to their communities. An evaluation of this partnership between a state government office for youth, government secondary schools and community organisations found that a universal program such as Advance could engage a diverse group of young people. Many of the young Advance participants face barriers to success in education and do not have the social capital to facilitate supportive personal networks. Advance contributes to the community’s capacity to partner young people and broaden community links that are pivotal to young people’s sense of connectedness and belonging.