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Spectators in Australian politics? Young voters' interest in politics and political issues
by Quentin Beresford & Harry C.J. Phillips

Youth Studies Australia, v.16, n.4, December 1997, pp.11-16

When, and for what reasons, do young people begin to develop their interest in politics and political issues? This study of 18- to 24-year-olds in Western Australia indicates that political awareness is a part of maturing into the responsibilities of adulthood. It also suggests that socioeconomic status and compulsory voting may contribute towards that awareness. While young voters do not display party loyalty, there may well be a core of shared values among them, including strong support for the issues of republicanism, Aboriginal reconciliation and a racially non-discriminatory immigration policy.

The Youth Work Contract: Professionalism and ethics
by Howard Sercombe

Youth Studies Australia, v.16, n.4, December 1997, pp.17-21

This paper aims to establish some core understandings of youth work practice and some of the attendant ethical considerations. The nature of the contract between young people and youth workers is explored, along with the often conflicting expectations that come from funding bodies, communities, management and other professionals. Also discussed are the contributions, as well as some of the difficulties, that understanding youth work as a profession might make to one's practise of it.

Big hArt: The theatrical side of youth crime prevention
by Reece Walters

Youth Studies Australia, v.16, n.4, December 1997, pp.22-26

In May 1992, 22 young people performed before audiences of more than 1,000 people in the township of Burnie on Tasmania's North-West coast. These young people, many of whom were young offenders, worked closely together on a daily basis for 14 weeks and produced a play they called Girl, a drama which conveyed their personal traumas and emotions to a community which, in their view, had left them feeling isolated and angry. This article examines Big hArt, an ongoing theatre-based crime prevention initiative for 'at risk' young people.

Youth mental health promotion: A public health perspective
by Robyn Moore

Youth Studies Australia, v.16, n.4, December 1997, pp.27-36

This New Zealand project involved consulting young people about life events and attitudes which they believed had impacted on their mental health. Adults from youth-oriented occupational groupings were also consulted about youth mental health issues.

This report is now being used as a discussion document by individuals and organisations who are keen to identify youth mental health issues, discuss implications for practise, and improve their communication and their services for youth.

Reducing the risk: Connections that make a difference in the lives of youth
by Robert Blum & Peggy Mann Rinehart

Youth Studies Australia, v.16, n.4, December 1997, pp.37-50

The National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health (Add Health) is the first national US study of adolescent health designed to measure the social settings of adolescent lives, the ways in which adolescents connect to their social world, and the influence of these social settings and connections on health.

This report describes the first results from the Add Health study. It shows how key aspects of the home environment, the school context, and the individual adolescent's life can protect young people from harm or place them at risk. It lays the groundwork for building a detailed understanding of 'connections that make a difference in the lives of youth'.