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Support for call for more youth funds

Friday 5 December 2008
Support for young people’s call for more youth funds

This afternoon young people in Taranaki will join with adults in their community in a march for better funding of youth services.

The demonstration begins at 5.30pm at the Taranaki Central School field, and will travel to Puke Ariki Landing.

The head of the national network of organisations that work with youth, New Zealand Aotearoa Adolescent Health and Development (NZAAHD), says the funding of youth development in New Zealand falls short.

NZAAHD President Trissel Mayor says: “There are fourteen youth ‘one stop shops’ across New Zealand that provide young people with health care and other services."

“These services are consistently strapped for cash, and in particular struggle to get funding for youth development work - the work that we know makes the biggest difference for young people."

Youth development activities includes peer support workers, groups and acitivities that build young people’s confidence and strengths.

“But even the health aspect doesn’t sit well within the current primary health care funding model.

So youth-specific services end up missing out - and therefore young people are missing out."

Young people prefer to access youth-specific health services, and are poorly enrolled in general practices.

“The youth-specific health services are filling a huge need, and therefore should be properly funded,” Ms Mayor says.

The Ministry of Health had recently announced dedicated funding for some services in decile 1-3 secondary schools and for an evaluation of Youth One Stop Shops.

“But we are still waiting for actual funding to ensure the services are able to meet the needs of young people in each region,” Ms Mayor says.


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