PO Box 55, Frankston Vic 3199

Youth Mini Bus Project

Youth Mini Bus Project

Frankston and Mornington Peninsula Youth Mini Bus Project

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Menzies committee member Kevin Johnson hands over the keys of the new Menzies bus to Frankston Police Youth Resource Officers for their youth engagement project.

Picture by Steve Tanner Courtesy of Leader Community Newspapers

Program 1: Frankston and Mornington Peninsula Youth Mini Bus Project
Funding provided: $60,000 – bus and running costs for the period of the agreement
Protect term: 3 years

Background:
Over the past five years Police Youth Resources Officers have been involved in the delivery of numerous programs aimed at reconnecting young people with the community, family and education. These Programs have a variety of target groups including victims, offenders and those at risk of entering any form of out of home care.

The Police YRO’s have identified transport as a major limiting factor of community engagement amongst young people in Frankston and the Mornington Peninsula. On frequent occasions, youth give lack of transport and /or lack of Myki credit as their reason for non attendance at pre-arranged activities.

Community volunteers, police and other youth services collaboratively provide this engagement opportunity for offenders from Frankston Children’s Court, residents of DHHS residential accommodation and other disengaged youth. Residents from DHHS are regularly invited to engagement activities and express their intent attend, but rarely attend. When asked about the reasons, they say that no career was available to drive them, and / or it’s too hard to get to events and activities by public transport. As a result, they are not successfully engaged.

The proposal put to the Menzies CoM was that if YRO’s and partner youth agencies had access to a mini bus they could collect young people to ensure their involvement in activities. Menzies response : Menzies has purchased a minibus that can be driven on standard licence. Menzies will finance the running and maintenance costs for a period of three years. The bus is used by Victoria Police Youth Resource Officers and partner agencies jointly and individually, for the transport of disadvantaged youth living in Franks ton and the Morning ton Peninsula to community activities, events and programs.

Community volunteers, police and other youth services collaboratively provide this engagement opportunity for offenders from Franks ton Children’s Court, residents of DHHS residential accommodation and other disengaged youth. Residents from DHHS are regularly invited to engagement activities and express their intent attend, but rarely attend. When asked about the reasons, they say that no career was available to drive them, and / or it’s too hard to get to events and activities by public transport. As a result, they are not successfully engaged.

The proposal put to the Menzies CoM was that if YRO’s and partner youth agencies had access to a mini bus they could collect young people to ensure their involvement in activities. Menzies response : Menzies has purchased a minibus that can be driven on standard license. Menzies will finance the running and maintenance costs for a period of three years. The bus is used by Victoria Police Youth Resource Officers and partner agencies jointly and individually, for the transport of disadvantaged youth living in Franks ton and the Morning ton Peninsula to community activities, events and programs.

The bus is also used for a range of other purposes that support disengaged youth and in particular, youth in out of home care.

Other uses include the following:
Police intelligence is utilized to identity youth hotpots and transport is available for multi agency outreach.
Patrols to attend high-risk community locations in peak times.
YRO’s use the bus to conduct missing person patrols for youth missing from out of home care.
General police operations involving youth.
Pro-active youth engagement

The programs is in its infancy but Youth Resource Officers envisage that the bus will be used daily in a variety ways. In a typical week, police envisage support for upwards of 150 disengaged youth through:
Youth Engagement and Ball checks.
Out of home care police youth visits.
Blue Light Basketball
Police Youth Bail Compliance Checks
Rec Link football Frankston
Rec Link Football Rosebud
Missing Youth Patrol 8
Frankston Children’s Court transport
DHHS top 10 Youth At Risk – Home Visits
Maori Warden Patrols
Blue Light Disco Transport
Community Hot Spots
Police Youth Operations
Community Events
Hot Spot Patrols
The bus will be a key to early intervention and engagement of young people to prevent exposure to the criminal justice system and placement in out of home care. It will allow a collaborative multi-agency approach to youth issues in Frankston and the Mornington Peninsula thus providing the best opportunity for positive outcomes.

After a few short months, Menzies is delighted to see the immediate and positive impact the bus is having on disengaged youth in our area, particularly those in out of home care or as a proactive protective measure, preventing the need for out of home care placement.