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A step in the right direction

18 November 2021
Teenage girl 2

Casey’s* future may have looked uncertain when her relationship with her mother broke down but when our Youth Service got involved, her life started to get back on track. The first thing she was able to access is the Youth Payment.

The Youth Payment is made by the Ministry of Social Development (Work and Income). Eligible young people aged 16-17 receive a weekly payment to help them cover their living costs while they stay in school to complete their education or enrol in training.

Casey was just 17 at the time and already had to deal with distress that saw her estranged from her mother, living away from home (and away from her younger sister) and needing financial assistance. Ian’s support and advice about the Youth Payment made all the difference and gave Casey some independence and much-needed financial stability.

Casey was able to remain focused at school studying NCEA, knowing that she had the support of Ian, her Youth Coach, to help provide mentoring and guidance around her other needs. These included finding part-time employment, securing accommodation, and helping her to work through things as and when the arose. Ian also acted as a sounding board for Casey, where she could feel free and safe to openly discuss what was going on in her life.

And the outcome? Casey successfully continued at school studying NCEA Level 3, and, even better, her Youth Payment was cancelled earlier this year due to a reconciliation with her mother. Casey moved back into the family home after her relationship with her mother was worked on through family counselling.

Ian explains that the Youth Payment is a big help for young people like Casey. “The Youth Payment can also help pay for things like driving lessons, short courses for employment, course related costs for education, and give people like Casey some financial support so they can concentrate on building a future, whether that’s in school or some other form of education or training or finding employment.”

*Names and photos have been changed to protect privacy

123RF Teen onLaptop 13738536 m

Youth Service

Find out more about the Youth Service, including the Youth Payment and the Young Parent Payment.

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We help many young people like Casey but we can't do it without financial support. Will you consider making a donation so we can work with other young people? Thank you.

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