Cultivating connections and understanding with African young people and their families

The African Youth and Family Project exceeded expectations, with up to 35 young people attending and facilitating weekly meetings, uncovering young people with leadership skills and young people willing to present about their activity at a number of national conferences and participating in the development of a program DVD resource.1 This project built upon a long history at CMY of working with young people of African background to achieve their goals within the community.

From the mid 1990s, CMY (then EYIN) had been supporting young people of African background to develop initiatives to support their wellbeing and connectedness. Working with young people, their families, youth workers and educators, EYIN supported young peoples’ access to recreational programs, tutoring, leadership opportunities and mainstream services. EYIN had also engaged young people of African background in their research and advocacy to challenge misconceptions about ‘ethnic gangs’ in the mid-1990s.

CMY would continue to work with young people of African background, their families and communities into the future to create a range of opportunities to advocate, have their voices heard, participate in leadership and support programs.

1 Centre for Multicultural Youth Issues (2007), The African Youth and family Project: Exploring connections between young people and family, school and community services. CMYI, Carlton.