Bateau Bay, a coastal suburb on the NSW Central Coast, has high reported incidents of drug and alcohol experimentation for young women and assaults often fueled by social media interactions. Around 20% of people arrested on the Central Coast are juveniles, which is especially concerning considering youth involved in the juvenile justice system frequently have more than one co-occurring mental health or substance use issue.
The Bateau Bay Police Citizens Youth Club (PCYC) provides programs that enable young people, primarily those who are disadvantaged or at risk of involvement in crime, to participate in sporting, artistic, educational and recreational activities.
Our funding will help PCYC Bateau Bay to assist girls aged 12 to 16 years who experience mental health issues and are at risk of involvement in criminal activity.
Go Girls is a capacity-building program that promotes a holistic approach to mental health issues by focusing on self-confidence, body image, healthy relationships, nutrition, independent living skills, emotional intelligence and safe use of social media.
The program also educates the young women about mental illness, services that are available locally and strategies to reduce the stress in their lives.
During the 10-week Go Girls program the young women spend a full day each week with the two female Police Youth Case Managers who facilitate the program and organise guest speakers, and importantly also provide a positive adult role model in the girls lives.
The program aims to build skills and resilience in at risk young women, dispel negative images around mental health and reduce their contact with the juvenile justice system.
For more information visit www.pcycnsw.org.au