$23 million to help homeless youth

Joint Media Release with:

Minister for Social Services

The Hon. Christian Porter

Young people who are homeless or at risk of being homeless across Australia will benefit from the Government’s decision to extend funding agreements for the youth homelessness programme, Reconnect.

Minister for Social Services, Christian Porter, and Assistant Minister for Social Services and Multicultural Affairs, Zed Seselja, today announced that the extension would provide $23 million in funding to enable Reconnect providers to continue delivering their services.

“This extension will give certainty to 74 service providers across Australia,” Minister Porter said.

“Through Reconnect, vulnerable young Australians get help to stabilise their living situation and improve their level of engagement with family, work, education, training and their local community.

“Reconnect services are in 102 locations across the country and provide vulnerable young people and their families with counselling, group work, mediation, practical support, and specialised mental health assistance where needed.

“The programme, which began in 1996, uses community-based early intervention services to assist young people aged 12 to 18 years who are homeless, or at risk of homelessness, and their families,” Minister Porter said.

“Through the Newly Arrived Youth Specialist service, Reconnect also supports people aged 12 to 21 years who arrived in Australia in the last five years on humanitarian or family visas, and who are homeless or at risk of homelessness,” Minister Seselja said.

“Reconnect helps some of the most vulnerable in our community and I am pleased to help deliver support to this programme through to 30 June 2018.”

The Government is continuing to consult with Reconnect service providers on funding and service delivery arrangements, and is working with state and territory governments on broader homelessness reforms. Today’s announcement follows the Government’s $117 million commitment in December to the Transitional National Partnership Agreement on Homelessness (NPAH).

More information on the Reconnect programme is available on the DSS website.