The QAIHC Youth Hub project is making significant progress in increasing youth engagement with the ACCHO sector.

In 2023-2024, Youth Hub coordinators Jaymie Lynch and Taeg Twist have been working with Members to support the development of 10 inclusive and integrated Youth Hubs in Queensland.

The Youth Hub team helped achieve this by promoting and distributing one-off seed grants to interested Members of the ACCHO sector (NPA Family and Community Services, ATSICHS Mackay, Apunipima Cape York Health Council, CRAICCHS, Gidgee Healing, Injilinji, NCACCH, PICC, TAIHS and Wuchopperen).

There were a range of Hubs established with the design of each driven by local youth. The models range from securing physical spaces for the youth hubs and working in partnership with youth organisations, to setting aside specific clinic times and staff.

Making these hubs work in practice is not only about health but about providing access to other services which youth need.

Engaging the Department of Treaty, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Partnerships, Communities and the Arts as a stakeholder was essential for coordinated investment and service design, ensuring the hubs aligned with local needs and aspirations.

The youth hubs are envisioned as safe spaces where young people can access health promotion programs, traditional healing, peer educators, cultural learning, and physical wellness programs.

Additionally, they offer information and coping strategies for mental health, social and emotional wellbeing, and substance abuse.

“Establishing these hubs is more than just creating physical spaces; it is about fostering a supportive community where our youth can thrive culturally, mentally, and physically,” Ms Lynch said.

Other highlights from the Youth Hub team included:

  • reestablishing the QAIHC Youth Network
  • attending the opening Wiyi Yani U Thangani, an institute that elevates the voices of First Nations women and girls in Canberra
  • celebrating NPA Family and Community Youth Hub’s one-year milestone anniversary
  • Injilinji in Mt Isa renovating its Youth Hub facility. On completion, the facility will have the capacity to operate the Vacation Care program through the entire holiday period
  • Queensland Art Gallery/Gallery of Modern Art presenting their ‘Design Tracks’ Program to the Network
  • Quitline utilising the Network to discuss the needs and behaviors around tobacco and vaping cessation.