Children and young people are not spared from the human rights abuses that force people to become refugees. They may experience these traumatic events, as part of a family or on their own, and are forced to flee their homes with little understanding of the reasons or causes. At QPASTT we employ specialist child and youth workers to deliver a holistic service including outreach and work collaboratively with key people in their lives such as family, guardians and carers, schools, support workers and communities.
Given the great diversity of experiences amongst the children and young people we work with, there are various programs that aim to engage and offer support in a way that best suits the individual. We use group activities such as open activities like school holiday activities, camps and homework support to connect with children and young people. At times, this can lead to individual counselling. We also run closed therapeutic groups that that are tailored and targeted to specific needs, usually partnering with schools and/or other community organisations.
The Children’s Program addresses the special needs of traumatised primary school-aged children from refugee backgrounds, aged 5 to 12 years old. The work with children uses a child-centred, multicultural approach with play and art therapy.
The Youth Program is open to young people of high school age and up to 24 years. With a strong community development focus, the programs’ primary objective is to promote connections to community, culture, family and peers. The program includes a suicide prevention project called ‘NEXUS’ which aims to reduce suicide risk by:
- Reducing the impact of risk factors associated with the refugee experience such as loss, grief and family breakdown and
- Promoting the protective factor of ‘connectedness’