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Programmes For At-Risk Youth On A Knife’s Edge

The Turn Your Life Around Youth Development Trust (“TYLA”) which operates centres out of Ōtara and Avondale has launched an urgent appeal for public funding today.

For nearly 30 years the Auckland-based charity has helped more than 1,000 of New Zealand’s most at-risk young people avoid a life of crime and get their lives back on track.

Today, inflationary pressures, the rising costs of goods, and reduced granting from key partners has put the charity on a knife’s edge.

TYLA supports approximately 120 people every year in its programmes, but without urgent funding it may be forced to close its doors.

Jolene Cartwright, Co-General Manager of TYLA, says that they are now as at risk as the young people.

“Like many charities, funding is a constant struggle, but our position is more precarious than it has ever been, just when the need is at greatest.”

Intergenerational trauma, poverty, substance abuse, family violence, and mental health issues are leaving our most vulnerable young people without hope and on the wrong side of the street.

At the core of all TYLA programmes is its proven social work method of therapeutic mentoring. This involves working with young people on an individual basis and creating a plan based on their unique situation and needs.

“We know that once people enter the youth justice system it is much harder to get them out. Intervention at a young age is proven to reduce the likelihood of offending and we have a 75 per cent success rate* – that’s got to be worth saving,” says Jolene.

TYLA is looking for the support of the New Zealand public to help and seeks $100,000 to fill its current funding gap.

“We know that New Zealanders care about safe communities, and we know that they haven’t given up hope. For these kids, we are hope,” adds Anastasia.

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