Budget blow for Rise

Rise Network chief executive Justine Colyer.
Rise Network chief executive Justine Colyer.

Due to cuts announced in the Budget, the Rise Network in Middle Swan is set to lose almost $800,000 in funding, which is about half of its Youth Division budget.

Rise last month was named winner of the best large organisation at the Community Service Excellence Awards for its dedication to improving the lives of hundreds of West Australians.

Rise Network chief executive Justine Colyer said it was disappointing the Government had cut funding that assisted young people at a crucial time in their lives.

‘It is essential young people have an educational foundation so they have options for a bright future and to make their contribution to society,’ she said.

The Youth Connections program funds eight service providers across WA, including four in the metropolitan area.

Across the state, service providers are set to lose more than $7.6 million in funding and up to 77 staff. Youth Affairs Council of WA chief executive Craig Comrie said the Youth Connections program had helped thousands of young people gain education, training and employment.

‘The Youth Connections program teams up disengaged young people with a case worker who helps them find alternative education if they cannot attend a mainstream school, or access other forms of training or employment,’ he said.

‘The program has been independently assessed and has a success rate of around 80 per cent.’

Mr Comrie said the Rise Network had more than 50 young people involved in the Youth Connections program.

‘Without the help of this program, many of these young people will lose vital supports that assist them in staying engaged with education and employment,’ he said.

Mr Comrie said the Rise Network was set to lose eight knowledgeable and highly skilled staff, which would severely affect its ability to offer services to young people.