A helping hand for at risk youth

By Jade Hawkins on March 15, 2016

Combined Youth Services Trust 3Giving young people a second chance.
That is the overall aim of the Combined Youth Services Trust, which helps fund programmes for at- risk youth in west Auckland.

Working closely with the police, the trust identifies young people who are at risk of offending or who are first time offenders, and funds preventative programmes.

And thanks to a grant from Harcourts Blue Fern Realty Limited, through the Harcourts Foundation, two vital programmes will be going ahead in 2016.

The first is an AA Defensive Driving Course. Combined Youth Services Trust chair Beverley Revell says the funding from Harcourts Henderson means 10 young people will be able to attend the course.

“It’s for young people that are on their learners or restricted licence and have come to the attention of the police. It means they can upskill their driving ability and attitude, which will not only benefit them but the community as a whole.”

The second initiative funded by Harcourts Henderson is the Koru Programme, which was developed for “troubled”, rather than “troublesome”, children aged under 13.

“These are young people who are not yet coming to the attention of the police, but due to their life circumstances they may head in the direction of youth crime or poverty if preventative measures are not put in place for them immediately,” Mrs Revell says.

The Koru Programme runs for a school term and aims to equip the children with better self-esteem, confidence and hope for the future.

Inspector Claire Humble says without funding from groups like the Harcourts Foundation police simply would not be able to hold or refer young people to such programmes.

“We are hugely grateful. It’s so important we do everything we can to help these children and young people on the right path.”

Harcourts Blue Fern Realty Limited owner Phil Freeman says the Combined Youth Services Trust does incredibly valuable work and is just the kind of community based charity that he and the Blue Fern team likes to support.