Snapshot 2020: NSW Youth Sector

In partnership with the Intergener8 Living Lab at Western Sydney University in late 2019, Youth Action conducted the largest survey of the NSW Youth Sector in a decade. In just around 4 weeks we received responses from 488 respondents.  CEOs, executive and regional service managers, team leaders, coordinators, administrators, youth workers and other frontline workers shared their experiences, highlights and challenges working in the youth sector. 

It has been almost 10 years since Youth Action collected this level of data from youth services about demand, activities, and priorities, and from people who work with young people in NSW about their experiences, attitudes, and backgrounds. Findings provide crucial information to inform sector reform and policy making, as well as to identify ways to build on the strengths of the youth services sector. We want to thank everyone who completed the survey, which was created for the sector and made possible only by the sector’s support. 

Snapshot 2020: The State the of NSW Youth Sector launched April 17

Youth Action officially launched the report on April 17, 2020 during a webinar event via Zoom. The findings from Snapshot 2020 highlight a vibrant, diverse and active NSW youth sector. They show it’s a sector driven by expertise, with a strengths based focus and a commitment to support and make positive changes in the lives of young people aged 12 to 25. Data shows that this is a workforce motivated to put young people first. 

Snapshot 2020

The largest survey of the NSW youth sector in a decade. Download the report here.

Stories of the Sector – What is Youth Work?  

Last year during the biennial NSW Youth Work Conference we started a storytelling project interviewing youth workers to create a conversation with the sector talking about the challenges, highlights and misconceptions of youth work. Knowing the survey was to be released later in 2019, we intentionally added questions from the survey to our interviews to add to the data and link the findings to visual tangible evidence of lived experience. This is a short preview of many stories of the sector, for the sector. In this video, three case studies from the report, Darrel, Kane and Monique share their experiences to help us understand better what youth work is. Keep an eye on this space.

Publication and Findings

The youth sector workforce is dedicated, skilled and effective at responding to and engaging with young people in crisis on a regular basis. There is scope to significantly leverage digital technologies to enhance youth services and their benefits for young people and their communities. There is also a growing diversity of young people that seek out youth services and a diverse workforce that is well placed to support them.  

The youth sector is the greatest untapped resource for the government and the community to understand how best to meet the needs of young people and better address the complex social problems that affect them.  

The youth sector puts young people’s needs, views, and experience atthe heart of what it does and wecall on the government and wider community to do the same. 

We have developed a pack for your use, which includes the Key Findings from the report as a printable A3 PDF that you can use as a poster or document for meetings, as well as various tiles of the key findings to use for you social channels and communications to help with your advocacy.

Download the pack here.

Thank you

Youth Action would like to thank everyone who participated in the survey.  

Also a big thank you to our advisory group who helped guide the study; Siobhan Bryson – Weave Youth and Community Services, Natalie Chiappazzo – BYSA, Maddy Forwood – MYST, Katie Kapp – Wollongong Youth Services, Nada Nasser – Mission Australia and Darrel Smith – Miyay Birray Youth Services. 

Our study included case studies of services under the topic areas of Youth Participation, Meeting Community Demand,  importance of Diversity within the Workforce, and adapting to digital technology. Thank you to all involved; Darrel Smith, Natalie Chiappazzo, Blake Tatafu, Alex Long, Monique Ready, Kane Alkoraghooli and all involved in the storytelling project who shared their stories with us.