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Youth Care Support Services (YCSS) Child, Youth and Family Intervention Service is In the Spotlight

by PeakCare Qld on 23rd June 2016

Home -> Articles -> 2016 -> June -> Youth Care Support Services (YCSS) Child, Youth and Family Intervention Service is In the Spotlight

Respect, Empower & Achieve are the mantras of Youth Care Support Services (YCSS) Child, Youth and Family Intervention Service. They endeavour to ensure that each child and young person is noted and respected for their uniqueness. In working with children and young people, particularly in their advocacy work, they are a voice for children and young people and as such encourage young people to also find their own voices. Each young person has a unique story that needs to be heard. YCSS experiences this with young people regularly and encourages them to speak out and be heard.

“Each young person who spends time in YCSS is valued, appreciated and respected” says CEO Ann Marie Matthews. Their goal is to use a model of practice that empowers young people to begin a journey and process of believing in themselves. Building self-esteem and offering opportunities are seen by YCSS as key to young people flourishing.

YCSS provides a safe, stable and positive environment where children and young people have a sense of identity and belonging. Building a positive environment and offering the right support at the right time to ensure their care needs are met whilst in residential accommodation is a major intent of the programs offered.

Their commitment is to provide children and young people who are in the care of the Department of Communities, Child Safety and Disability Services with a secure, comfortable and ‘homely’ home based environment. In doing so they provide a range of out of home and residential care services. They also provide a transitional care program, intensive placement support services, therapeutic out of home care programs and services as well as life skills programs and respite services. Their range of accommodation services include crisis, medium and longer term stays for children and young people. YCSS also offers therapeutic intervention, educational and adventure based support programs to children and young people in their accommodation.

YCSS engages staff who are dedicated to professional practice and are committed to their model of care. CEO Ann Marie Matthews is clear about why she is dedicated to both her role and the organisation she leads: “Ilove what I do and I am grateful YCSS hasbeen given the opportunityto makepositive changes, big andsmallinthe lives ofchildren andyoung people whilstin our care. As CEO I am open to new ideas and I have a team of professionalswho are solution focused and work as a team and support each other.What I love about YCSS is the vast knowledge and experienceeach person has and that each role isequally asimportant as the other.Most significantly, we are a team.”

Ann Marie reflects on the changes brought aboutby the implementation ofthe CarmodyReport Taking Responsibility: A Roadmap for Queensland Child Protection (June, 2013) recommendations and the impacts on her organisation and the sector. She acknowledges the significance of recommendations about children and young people’s need for contact with family, kin and culture: “YCSS has been developing a prevention and early intervention program calledKeeping Kids at Home (KKAT) Programwhich will be launched on 1st July 2016. This program acknowledges the importance of children and young people staying home with families, kin and culture as a first priority and brings together a team of professionals who are passionate,driven andareall working toward a common goal of keeping kids at home and close to those they connect with.”

This year marks the 10 year anniversary for YCSS. Ann Marie sees this as an opportunity for reflection on work practices as well as a dual opportunity for both individual practitioners within YCSS and the organisation to grow. She states that as a professional it takes more than one person to lead a team. As such, her favourite quote is from Tom Peters: "Leaders don't create followers, they create more leaders."

YCSS is a long term registered supporter of PeakCare Queensland. If you are interested in becoming a PeakCare supporter please visit our membership page on our website.

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