Anangu Youth Speak Up!

Our hopes, dreams & challenges

Shalaylee (end right)  is 18yo and works for NPYWC helping young people in remote NPY communities access boarding school opportunities. Originally from Imanpa and now living in Alice Springs, Shalaylee talks to young people outbush everyday and understands their dreams and hardships.

In year 8 my family and I made a decision for me to move from Imanpa and stay with family members in Alice Springs to access education at Centralian Middle and Senior schools…this decision has really shaped me and my work with young people in education.

Hope for the future – we want jobs!

Getting a job, getting a driver’s license and exploring the world outside communities are the things Shalaylee hears as important to young people 16-25yo.

Young people in remote communities are really wanting to work. In a recent survey of 53 young people conducted by NPYWC, 43% listed work as the main hope for their future(keeping in mind this survey was completed by 10yo-25yo’s). Some communities have more opportunities for work than others but a consolidated effort to provide real work for  young people living in remote communities would go a long way in addressing a new generation’s hopes and needs.

Our hardships

Shalaylee says a hardship at the top of young people’s minds is housing. Overcrowded houses in remote communities are a major issue and young people are really feeling the stress of their living situations.

Remote communities have limited access to services and experiences people take for granted in cities. Shalaylee thinks young people see work opportunities, entertainment (movies, shops etc), and education options limited in remote communities. Remote communities are set amongst a a backdrop of  high cost of groceries / food  / fuel and limited opportunity for income.

Seemingly small things like getting basic identification is a big struggle for young people Shalaylee says. ID’s are needed to open a bank account, get a license, apply for work and get financial support from Centrelink. Copies of birth certificates are not readily available in communities.

Remote youth in Alice Springs

Why do young people from remote NPY lands visit or decide to stay in Alice Springs.?

Shalaylee sees young people coming to Alice Springs because they are following parents and family members who come to town for appointments. They don’t wont to be left at home without people to care for them.

Like Shalaylee, young people also choose to leave their home community to access better education.  Many young people are seeing Alice Springs as a place with better job opportunities and a place to explore new horizons and a bigger understanding of the world.

Shalaylee thinks some young people may also leave bad family situations outbush to come into Alice Springs to stay with extended family or friends.

Read more about Shalaylee’s story

A NPYWC program getting young people ready for work

Getting a job can be challenging for young people amidst the backdrop of cultural and language barriers.
The NPYWC Iwara program is a 12 week pilot intensive program based both in Alice Springs and out bush. It  has helped young school leavers from the remote NPY lands get ready for real work in their communities and beyond. The program looks at:

  • Employers expectations
  • Administration skills
  • Confidence and communication
  • Experience in the workplace
  • Experience running activities

Its challenging & pushes you out of your comfort zone… Iwara aims to help young people get confident and build skills for jobs, particularly those roles that exist in their home communities. Iwara has had a successful 2 year pilot with most young Iwara participants now employed as youth workers and administration staff in remote communities. The program is currently looking for funding.

Find out more about the Youth Service