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An innovative community initiated service, the Aboriginal Youth Healing Centre (AYHC) is currently being planned for western New South Wales in response to the high levels of incarceration for Aboriginal youth. The centre will use proven techniques to reduce crime, and decrease the number of young people going into gaols and detention.
Local Aboriginal leaders are working together with local agencies, the University of Wollongong, the National Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation (NACCHO) and the David Peachey Foundation to develop the service, which will draw together best-practice prevention methods.
The AYHC will engage young people at risk of offending to build social capabilities and help break the cycle of offending, incarceration and recidivism. Uncle Isaac Gordon, senior Brewarrina community member and Walgett Aboriginal Community Liaison Officer, said, 'The Centre is about breaking the damaging patterns we see out here and establishing new patterns, using the foundations of our culture, heritage and community to build those patterns.'
The AYHC will be established on a working property in the Orana region of western New South Wales. A proposal to resource the project is being put forward to the Commonwealth and New South Wales Government departments.
Source: National Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation (NACCHO)