CHOP FOR A CAUSE

Headspace train­ing pro­vides knowl­edge to help main­tain work and study

Mt Druitt - St Mary's Standard (East) - - FRONT PAGE - Jil­lian Mc­Kee

AL­MOST a third of young peo­ple in Mt Druitt are be­com­ing dis­en­gaged with the com­mu­nity – and are not work­ing nor study­ing. Ac­cord­ing to re­cent data from the Aus­tralian Bureau of Sta­tis­tics, Tregear had the high­est level of youth dis­en­gage­ment.

A to­tal of 29.3 per cent of youths are not work­ing or study­ing. Bid­will fol­lowed closely with 27.9 per cent.

This is more than 20 per cent higher than the state av­er­age of 9.3 per cent.

Mt Druitt state La­bor MP Ed­mond Atalla said th­ese sta­tis­tics were alarm­ing.

“The Mt Druitt elec­torate has one of the low­est av­er­age ages in all of NSW, mean­ing there are more younger peo­ple in com­par­i­son to other ar­eas – mak­ing sta­tis­tics higher,” Mr Atalla said. “The cost is mak­ing study­ing re­ally un­af­ford­able – the Govern­ment is ask­ing young peo­ple to com­mit to a mort­gage be­fore start­ing their lives. Study­ing and em­ploy­ment go hand in hand’” he said.

Headspace Mt Druitt man­ager El­iz­a­beth Ben- netts en­cour­aged par­ents and young peo­ple to seek help when dis­en­gage­ment was an is­sue.

“It’s hugely im­por­tant to spend time with young peo­ple to re­build con­nec­tions and en­gage­ment that have been lost,” Mrs Ben­netts said.

“Of­ten it takes sev­eral at­tempts and a con­sis­tent ap­proach to en­gage with young peo­ple.

“Headspace Mt Druitt also of­fers health pro­mo­tion and com­mu­nity de­vel­op­ment ini­tia­tives. Th­ese in­clude train­ing ses­sions on how to achieve good men­tal health, in­creas­ing helpseek­ing be­hav­iour and ses­sions that pro­vide knowl­edge and skills around main­tain­ing work and study.”

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