Its our third birthday!!!

Happy 3rd birthday Ultimate Youth Worker

Happy 3rd birthday Ultimate Youth Worker

Another year down and we can’t thank you all enough. In one of the toughest years to hit our sector in over a decade Ultimate Youth Worker has felt the pain. By December 31 2014  our clientele was cut by 60% due to the ferocious cuts to youth service provision by the federal government in Australia. The first half of the year we were on track to move from three part-time staff to all being full-time staff. However when the cuts came into effect we also felt the pinch and for the last six months Ultimate youth worker has been one part t-time staff member, Aaron Garth.

We launched our Employee Assistance Program and provided support to dozens of staff members across three agencies. We spoke at conferences and events across Australia including YACWA’s Fairground conference and as a local speaker at NYMC Encore. We have provided supervision to dozens of individual and group supervision clients. We have kept up the good fight to see youth workers stay supported in their roles to have longevity in the field. But it has been the hardest year we have had.

We want to thank all our supporters, clients and colleagues who have made Ultimate Youth Worker such a big part of the youth sector here in Australia and internationally. If you want to continue to support us we are looking to grow again this year through our supervision, training and support services… so get in contact.

Aaron Garth

Aaron Garth is the Executive Director of Ultimate Youth Worker. Aaron has worked as a youth worker in a number of settings including local church, street drug and alcohol outreach, family services, residential care, local government and youth homelessness since 2003. Aaron is a regular speaker at camps, retreats, & youth work training events and is a dedicated to seeing a more professional youth sector in Australia. Aaron is a graduate of RMIT University and an alumnus of their youth work program. He lives in Melbourne with his wife Jennifer & their daughters Hope, Zoe, Esther, Niamh and son Ezra.

More Posts - Website

Follow Me:
TwitterFacebookLinkedInPinterestYouTube

Corruption in education is hurting young people

There is currently an Independent Broad-based Anti-corruption Commission (IBAC) investigating corrupt spending within the Victorian department of education. It appears that there has been significant funds misappropriated from head office to the principals in schools. many of these people on $100, 000+ salaries already but they take from funds which could be used for support services.

Recently, the department has changed the classification of roles of support staff such as psychologists and social workers to pay them less. They also gave schools the opportunity to use the funds for these services in any way they wanted. Young people miss out again. The education system is not designed for supporting young people and then you have people who rort the system and hurt them even further. The commission has heard many stories of schools hiding invoices and being invoiced for work never supplied. More money being siphoned from where it needs to go.

Courtesy of www.theage.com.au

Courtesy of www.theage.com.au

It has been our observation that the more power people have the more likely they are to abuse it. With the education department spreading their power to the principals we are seeing many more issues with this power abuse. With this power came no accountability, and with no accountability we see abuse and corruption. These schools cry poor for funds to help their students but then…

This isn’t a new story by any stretch of the imagination. It is one that comes up time and time again. Every time it does we hear nothing of the services that are lost or the young people that have been hurt by these corrupt individuals. The education department needs to focus more on their internal accountability and good service provision and much less on penny pinching. Governments need to step in and have the guts to make a clean sweep and start again. These individuals are only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to corruption and poor service delivery.

In the words of the human headline; Shame, Shame, Shame.

For more on this see: this article.

Aaron Garth

Aaron Garth is the Executive Director of Ultimate Youth Worker. Aaron has worked as a youth worker in a number of settings including local church, street drug and alcohol outreach, family services, residential care, local government and youth homelessness since 2003. Aaron is a regular speaker at camps, retreats, & youth work training events and is a dedicated to seeing a more professional youth sector in Australia. Aaron is a graduate of RMIT University and an alumnus of their youth work program. He lives in Melbourne with his wife Jennifer & their daughters Hope, Zoe, Esther, Niamh and son Ezra.

More Posts - Website

Follow Me:
TwitterFacebookLinkedInPinterestYouTube

Who are young people?

Who are young people?

This might seem like a simple question at face value. It is after all our core business. Young people! However, this is one of the big questions currently pulling our sector apart at the seam. Across the world there are discussions trying to work out this simple question. From academia to those of us on the coalface it seems that opinions are abundant. In most cases the guide is that young people are between the ages of 12 and 25. However many in local government and academia have stated that we should lower that age to 10. Even the World Health Organisation weighed in to the conversation and said 10 to 30.

Young people in a group

Who are young people?

Some believe that ‘youth’ is the group of young people who are in high school. This definition clearly draws a line that post high schoolers aren’t allowed to cross. But then what do we do with the ‘young adults’? There are historical ideas of adolescence which state that the construct of ‘youth’ starts at the beginning of puberty and ends with adulthood. To say we are confused as a sector is an understatement. Still we push on. We are coerced to work with more children as we partner in the children, youth and families sector and further into young adult territory as we work in the education, employment and training sector.

If the youth work sector allows others to dictate who we work with, we will continue to have this little thorn in our side. In Australia we are fairly clear about this as a sector, however outside forces are trying to push us in the direction of child and youth work. This neoliberal push will in the end overtake us if we do not stand firm. Lets be clear about who it is we work for. Young people. Adolescents. Youth. Twelve to twenty-five. With all the struggles and excitement that the storms and stresses provide.

What do you think? Leave us a comment.

Aaron Garth

Aaron Garth is the Executive Director of Ultimate Youth Worker. Aaron has worked as a youth worker in a number of settings including local church, street drug and alcohol outreach, family services, residential care, local government and youth homelessness since 2003. Aaron is a regular speaker at camps, retreats, & youth work training events and is a dedicated to seeing a more professional youth sector in Australia. Aaron is a graduate of RMIT University and an alumnus of their youth work program. He lives in Melbourne with his wife Jennifer & their daughters Hope, Zoe, Esther, Niamh and son Ezra.

More Posts - Website

Follow Me:
TwitterFacebookLinkedInPinterestYouTube

Why does government struggle with young people?

The Federal Australian government is currently on the warpath. In their sights: cost cutting. The latest casualty: welfare payments. One of the biggest losers in the proposed changes put forward are young people. This isn’t the first time a government in Australia has targeted young people and welfare payments however it is the first time the current government has tried. This particular government had a report into welfare reform written which explicitly links policy directives on young people being in education, training or employment with access to welfare payments.

The McClure report sets out that young people under the age of 22 would not be eligible for stand alone welfare payments and only those young people involved in education or training would be eligible at all. This links education with welfare in a way that says our education system is appropriate for all young people. It requires study when for some young people this is neither available nor appropriate. It asserts power over young people in a way which has not been done before in Australia.

This proposed suite of changes was met with unprecedented backlash from the youth sector with every state and the national peak bodies condemning its lack of consultation and care fore young people. While the report recognised that some young people will be living independently, it is unclear on how they will be assessed to be “genuinely independent” and eligible to receive an income payment in their own right. Joanna Siejka, CEO of YNOT stated, “The report presumes that young people are not willing to engage in education, training and employment, but research shows that young people are increasingly wanting to engage in these activities and do not want to be on welfare”.

Why does government struggle with young people?

Government and the youth vote

This backlash from the youth peaks shone a light on a significant issue which is often not addressed by government. Why do governments struggle to support young people? There are a number of reasons however the biggest one is that for the most part young people cannot vote and are therefore not considered part of the constituency. If young people don’t have a vote then they do not count in the policy making process. Some governments will go beyond this focus, however more often than not young people face the brunt of cost cuts and policy changes.

Government needs to understand that just because their term in office is 3-4 years that young people have a long memory. Young people are the future and if we hurt them now they will remember when they are able to vote. This happened in the 2007 federal election in Australia and it will happen again. Young people must be treated with respect by government for longevity in politics. More than that it is just plain decency.

Aaron Garth

Aaron Garth is the Executive Director of Ultimate Youth Worker. Aaron has worked as a youth worker in a number of settings including local church, street drug and alcohol outreach, family services, residential care, local government and youth homelessness since 2003. Aaron is a regular speaker at camps, retreats, & youth work training events and is a dedicated to seeing a more professional youth sector in Australia. Aaron is a graduate of RMIT University and an alumnus of their youth work program. He lives in Melbourne with his wife Jennifer & their daughters Hope, Zoe, Esther, Niamh and son Ezra.

More Posts - Website

Follow Me:
TwitterFacebookLinkedInPinterestYouTube

How can youth participation happen when communities don’t ‘like’ young people.

Youth participation in community is a long way off

I have just spent the last hour refuting stupidity on my local community Facebook page. A couple of young people tagged a guys fence and he was ranting about catching them and doing them physical violence. The comments grew from there to other members advocating eye for an eye, adults beating children and my personal favourite bemoaning ‘do-gooders’ who want to talk instead of punish. To say it infuriated me is an understatement. However, this also reminded me of how far we have to go as a society n validating young people as equal citizens and partners of youth participation.

The people on the Facebook group were clear about their dislike of young people in general. Comments such as ‘If your kids come home a bit worse looking next time don’t come crying to me!’ and ‘Give the lil smart ass punks a hiding’ and ‘that’s the reason why our kids are little a**holes because we “talk” to them! If I did that in the 80s or early 90s you can guarantee I would of copped something.’ were rife among people. They go on to call them ‘pricks’, ‘turds’ and ‘poor example’. Not once did they ask why the young people were there, nor how we could involve young people in the community. Just over and over again how delinquent young people in our community are. Not once about youth participation in society.

 youth participation

Good society is full youth participation

I personally know over a dozen local young people who regularly support the local community off their own back. Who could all pass as candidates for local citizens of the year. But in the eyes of many in communities across the world young people don’t count. The idea that young people have nothing productive to contribute to society is one of the most damaging ideologies of our time. As youth workers, we need to change this problem.

We need to stand up to people who want to taint the reputation of our young people. We need to help our young people to show their positive side to the public. We need to address the ageism in society so that our youth are allowed full rights of participation. Youth participation is the challenge of all youth workers and the requirement of a fully developed society.

What do you think?

Aaron Garth

Aaron Garth is the Executive Director of Ultimate Youth Worker. Aaron has worked as a youth worker in a number of settings including local church, street drug and alcohol outreach, family services, residential care, local government and youth homelessness since 2003. Aaron is a regular speaker at camps, retreats, & youth work training events and is a dedicated to seeing a more professional youth sector in Australia. Aaron is a graduate of RMIT University and an alumnus of their youth work program. He lives in Melbourne with his wife Jennifer & their daughters Hope, Zoe, Esther, Niamh and son Ezra.

More Posts - Website

Follow Me:
TwitterFacebookLinkedInPinterestYouTube

Christmas present ideas for a youth worker.

Christmas present ideas for an Ultimate Youth Worker

Twas the week before Christmas and if your like me, your wondering what to get for some of your youth work family. It needs to be something to help them grow. Something witty. Something that won’t break the bank. We believe that one of the best Christmas present ideas are one that extends our knowledge and our practice… A book. Developing your professional self is one of our pillars of practice and we believe that reading is one of the easiest and most cost effective professional development activities a person can engage with.

A good book for a youth worker is one that is well researched, has been peer reviewed and is able to develop new skills or understanding. It might not necessarily be a youth work specific book. It might be on management, on productivity or on neurology. It may be from a youth worker or a consultant, an academic or and economist. You never know who will build your knowledge! A good book is one of those great Christmas present ideas.

But which book shall you send to your colleague, boss or trusted staff member. There are literally thousands of books on working with young people, It can be hard to choose. For a good framework for choosing the right book for a youth workers professional development check this out. Whatever book you choose make sure it is one you would want to read yourself… that way you can borrow it later 🙂 Just remember that the best Christmas present idea is one that shows you care.

Here are a few of our favourite book ideas for this year. It is not an exhaustive list but it is definitely a list of books we have on our shelf. Whether you are a frontline worker, a team leader or a manager there is a book here for you. Feel free to take one or more of them!

Any book you buy helps fund us to keep this blog going 🙂

Aaron Garth

Aaron Garth is the Executive Director of Ultimate Youth Worker. Aaron has worked as a youth worker in a number of settings including local church, street drug and alcohol outreach, family services, residential care, local government and youth homelessness since 2003. Aaron is a regular speaker at camps, retreats, & youth work training events and is a dedicated to seeing a more professional youth sector in Australia. Aaron is a graduate of RMIT University and an alumnus of their youth work program. He lives in Melbourne with his wife Jennifer & their daughters Hope, Zoe, Esther, Niamh and son Ezra.

More Posts - Website

Follow Me:
TwitterFacebookLinkedInPinterestYouTube

Celebrate successes: The youth work mountaintop.

Celebrate successes

Tonight I met a bunch of youth workers for dinner to celebrate the amazing work they had done throughout the year. We ate, we drank and reminisced about the work that had been done. Camps, friday night programs, mentoring, leadership development and much much more. Over some amazing Thai food we spoke about the future and how to support the young people to begin developing their own programs. It was a real encouragement to see the amazing work that can be done by committed youth workers who are passionate about their young people.

Celebrate

Its great to celebrate on top of the mountain of success

As youth workers we often hear the stories of difficulties, trouble and trauma. But, it is the mountaintop moments which keep us encouraged. By mid year I was a bit over everything. I had been teaching, running programs and generally just scraping by. As I was about to start a new mental health class in July, I was floored when a new student happened to be a former young person I had worked with almost a decade ago. I cried, we hugged it was a very touching moment.

A client of ours recently took on a new job after a transition time in their organisation meant they had to move on. We caught up together over a chocolate milkshake and chatted about the new role and the amazing opportunities it would hold. We spoke about the successes he had in his previous role, the families he supported, the young people he helped back to school and the training opportunities he provided. We laughed till we wept and in the end were encouraged by each others company.

When the tough times hit it is easy to see them. It is these times that we need to focus on the mountaintop experiences of our past. They will help us get through the tough times and encourage us to continue to stay the course. Celebrate your successes!

Aaron Garth

Aaron Garth is the Executive Director of Ultimate Youth Worker. Aaron has worked as a youth worker in a number of settings including local church, street drug and alcohol outreach, family services, residential care, local government and youth homelessness since 2003. Aaron is a regular speaker at camps, retreats, & youth work training events and is a dedicated to seeing a more professional youth sector in Australia. Aaron is a graduate of RMIT University and an alumnus of their youth work program. He lives in Melbourne with his wife Jennifer & their daughters Hope, Zoe, Esther, Niamh and son Ezra.

More Posts - Website

Follow Me:
TwitterFacebookLinkedInPinterestYouTube

End of year and can’t be stuffed: no motivation.

I have been speaking to a lot of youth workers in the slow grind to the end of the year and it seems we are all losing motivation. It is always a tough grind to the end of the year however this year seems to have upped the ante. Many youth workers we speak to have lost their jobs, their programs have been de-funded and as a sector we are really feeling the pinch. Organisations are taking the brunt of this major transition as they try to meet KPI’s before years end with minimal staff. As usual young people luck out.

Youth work motivation

Focus on your intrinsic values

A few organisations we work with have been able to buck this trend a little. Their staff, even though losing their jobs, have been professional to the end. Organising other supports where possible and opportunities for their young people to continue to become more amazing. These youth workers have put their own career opportunities as a second priority to the needs of their young people.  Their organisations and senior management have supported their staff admirably. They have provided vocational counselling, Employee Assistance Programs and one on one support so that their staff can get through this time as best as possible.

Motivation is low in the youth sector. Its a tough time for organisations, youth workers and young people alike. However our motivation as youth work professionals is not a condition of how well we support our young people. As professionals we must serve our clients to the best of our ability even when our motivation is low. I was speaking to a group of youth work students who are also feeling this low motivation. They feel like the work they have done to gain their qualification is all for nought because of the issues facing the sector. As such their motivation has taken a beating.

[Tweet “Focus on your intrinsic values and those ‘I can’t be stuffed’ days will be few and far between.”]

With longevity in the field comes wisdom about these changes. Around every ten years or so the social services sector in Australia gets hit with budget cuts. We lose our funding and then over the next couple of years we have wilderness experiences until Government realises that they actually need to support young people. If our motivation is linked to funding we will always have ‘I can’t be stuffed moments’. If our motivation is linked to our own intrinsic values then these temporary setbacks for our profession will leave little mark.

Focus on your intrinsic values and those ‘I can’t be stuffed’ days will be few and far between.

Aaron Garth

Aaron Garth is the Executive Director of Ultimate Youth Worker. Aaron has worked as a youth worker in a number of settings including local church, street drug and alcohol outreach, family services, residential care, local government and youth homelessness since 2003. Aaron is a regular speaker at camps, retreats, & youth work training events and is a dedicated to seeing a more professional youth sector in Australia. Aaron is a graduate of RMIT University and an alumnus of their youth work program. He lives in Melbourne with his wife Jennifer & their daughters Hope, Zoe, Esther, Niamh and son Ezra.

More Posts - Website

Follow Me:
TwitterFacebookLinkedInPinterestYouTube

Youth Work Book Review: The Brain That Changes Itself: Stories of Personal Triumph from the Frontiers of Brain Science

Throughout my career as a youth worker and particularly over the past few years of educating youth workers I have been asked thousands of times what books I recommend youth workers should read. One of the top books I always recommend is The Brain That Changes Itself: Stories of Personal Triumph from the Frontiers of Brain Science by Norman Doidge, MD. It has almost nothing to do with contemporary youth work, however I think that it paints an amazing picture of the plasticity of the brain. This is key to why I recommend it as adolescence is a time where the brain is undergoing an amazing transformation.

Buy it below

You have to get this book.

Norman Doidge, a Psychiatrist, psychoanalyst  and researcher  delivers a very important and informative book that should be read by all. Dr. Doidge takes us by the hand and carefully explains that the brain can and does change throughout life. Contrary to the previous belief that after childhood the brain begins a long process of decline, Doidge shows us that our brains have the remarkable power to grow, change, overcome disabilities, learn, recover, and alter the very culture that has the potential to deeply affect human nature.

The long-held theory that brain functions were localized and specialised (like a machine) has now evolved to embrace the recognition that the brain is plastic and can actually change itself with exercise and understanding. This is a massive change in our limited understanding of the equipment that helped mankind land on the moon, create cities and solve the worlds diseases… our own brain!

In chapter 1, we meet Cheryl, a woman who has completely lost her sense of balance. She must hold on to the wall to walk, but even that does not steady her. And when she does fall, there is no relief for she still feels like she is falling perpetually into an abyss. This excruciating disorder due to total loss of vestibular apparatus makes her life a living hell. Such people are called “wobblers” because that is what they do. They behave and look like they are walking a tight rope. It is not surprising that many “wobblers” have committed suicide. Enter Paul Bach-y-Rita and his team who have invented a hat. This hat/helmet, with its tongue display and electrodes, acts as a sensor of movement in two planes thus giving Cheryl the ability to orient herself in space, thereby losing the terrible vertigo that led to wobbling. Cheryl and those like her who wear this seemingly magical hat can experience through the tongue connecting to the brain what is needed to maintain balance by finding new pathways in the brain that process balance. The broader implications of this discovery are mind-boggling.

Another hero in the plasticity movement is Michael Merzenich, one of the world’s leading researchers on the subject. Based on his belief in practicing a new skill under the right conditions, he claims that brain exercises can compete with drugs to treat schizophrenia and that cognitive function can improve radically in the elderly. Learning itself increases the capacity to learn by changing the structure of the brain which he likens to a living creature with an appetite needing nourishment and exercise. Working with a monkey he showed how brain maps are dynamic and work by the ‘use it or lose it’ principle. Two phrases associated with Merzenich are ‘use it or lose it’ (as with any muscle) and “neurons that fire together wire together” meaning that throwing a ball, for instance, many times in the same way creates a brain map where the thumb map is next to the index finger map, and then the middle finger. So, brain maps work by spatially grouping together events that happen together. Multi-tasking or divided attention does not lead to lasting change in brain maps.

The story of Mr. L in Chapter 9 illustrates exactly how psychoanalysis changed his character defenses by helping him access his deepest feelings about loss. Mr. L learned that it was safe to give up the denial that protected him for over 40 years from the pain of early loss. He exposed the memories and emotional pain that he had hidden, permitting psychological reorganization. Mr. L changed from an isolated, depressed man unable to commit to anyone, to a man able to experience profound love, marry, and have children.

In chapter 11, “More Than the Sum of Her Parts,” we meet Michelle, born with half a brain. The fact that her right hemisphere took over from her left hemisphere the functions of speech and language, while performing its own functions speaks clearly for neuroplasticity. Michelle leads a comfortable, though somewhat impaired life, enjoys movies, a job, and her family. The story of how one half of her brain took on functions of the missing half is an adventure.

My personal favourite Chapter, Seven, “Pain – The Dark side of Plasticity” introduces us to the neurologist V.S. Ramachandran, described as the Sherlock Holmes of modern neurology. Learning about this man is a fascinating experience in itself. He is heroic in his simplicity and curiosity. “Your own body is a phantom, one that your brain has constructed purely for convenience” says Ramachandran – and this statement has influenced so much of my thinking. His interest became phantom pain – pain that amputees feel after amputation and he discovered that rewired brain maps were the cause. The brain’s plasticity enables rewiring of missing neurons. These discoveries also explain a positive outcome of certain brain remapping and this is in the sexual realm. Phantom orgasm and phantom erection can be experienced in the feet of men with amputated legs and feet leading Ramachandran to wonder about foot fetishes in a neurological way. I will not even try to explain how the mirror box Ramachandran devised to help his patient Philip cope with excruciating pain from an elbow that was amputated works. But, successful amputation of this phantom limb through using the mirror box led others to use it – and there’s more! Ramachandran says that the distorted body images of anorexics and some who go for plastic surgery are caused by the brain and then projected onto the body. So, could one conclude that if one gets the message that he/she is ugly or fat, whether consciously or unconsciously, through loved ones or culture, the brain distorts the perception of the body? Anorectic people actually believe that they are always too fat – defying the reality of scales. It is no coincidence that Ramachandran is from India where his culture was open to what we would call mystical thinking. Psychotic people actually hear voices and hallucinate. Can the theory of brain plasticity be used to explain and even cure such cases. Read this chapter and decide for yourself. The idea that illusion and imagination can conquer chronic pain by restructuring brain maps plastically, without medication, needles, or electricity must be really bad news for the pharmaceutical industry.

The Brain That Changes Itself is one of those books that makes us imagine how much our brains may actually be able to do. Our young people in a state of brain growth have amazing opportunities for their brains to stretch and be pliable. As youth workers this critical time offers us an amazing time to speak into the lives of our young people.

You have to get this book!

Aaron Garth

Aaron Garth is the Executive Director of Ultimate Youth Worker. Aaron has worked as a youth worker in a number of settings including local church, street drug and alcohol outreach, family services, residential care, local government and youth homelessness since 2003. Aaron is a regular speaker at camps, retreats, & youth work training events and is a dedicated to seeing a more professional youth sector in Australia. Aaron is a graduate of RMIT University and an alumnus of their youth work program. He lives in Melbourne with his wife Jennifer & their daughters Hope, Zoe, Esther, Niamh and son Ezra.

More Posts - Website

Follow Me:
TwitterFacebookLinkedInPinterestYouTube

Knowing mental health: Depressive disorders

Depressive Disorders

While each one of us from time to time all feel sad, moody or low, some people experience these feelings intensely, for long periods of time (weeks, months or even years) and sometimes without any apparent reason. Depression is more than just a low mood, it is a disorder which has an impact on both physical and mental health. Adolescence is a critical time for mental health and it is estimated that 75 per cent of adult mental health conditions emerge before a person reaches the age of twenty-five. Around 550,000 young people in Australia aged between sixteen and twenty-five years live with depression or anxiety.

Ultimate Mental Health

Depression, it can be beaten.

According to the DSM5 the following diagnoses come under depressive disorders:

  • Disruptive mood dysregulation disorder
  • Major depressive disorder
  • Persistent depressive disorder (dysthymia)
  • Premenstral dysphoric disorder
  • Substance/medication induced depressive disorder
  • Depressive disorder due to another medical condition
  • Unspecified depressive disorder

[Tweet “#UltimateMentalHealth In adolescents #depression is often observable as irritable mood over sad or low mood.”]

Of the above disorders the most common one for youth workers to encounter in their young people is the diagnosis of ‘major depressive disorder‘. It is characterised by discrete episodes of at least two weeks duration (although most episodes last considerably longer) involving clear cut changes in affectcognition, and neurovegetative functions and inter-episode remissions. While these brain disorders can be diagnosed as one off episodes they are more often recurrent in a majority of cases. In adolescents depression is often observable as irritable mood over sad or low mood.

Major depressive disorder often finds itself in comorbid unity with anxiety in many of our young people. It is important for youth workers to have a good understanding of the diagnosis of depression as the consequence of leaving this disorder without treatment cans be fatal. The severity of the disorder and the persistence of psychotic features and remission status make up the criteria for diagnosis. If the disorder is severe it can lead to suicidality and in turn death.

Aaron Garth

Aaron Garth is the Executive Director of Ultimate Youth Worker. Aaron has worked as a youth worker in a number of settings including local church, street drug and alcohol outreach, family services, residential care, local government and youth homelessness since 2003. Aaron is a regular speaker at camps, retreats, & youth work training events and is a dedicated to seeing a more professional youth sector in Australia. Aaron is a graduate of RMIT University and an alumnus of their youth work program. He lives in Melbourne with his wife Jennifer & their daughters Hope, Zoe, Esther, Niamh and son Ezra.

More Posts - Website

Follow Me:
TwitterFacebookLinkedInPinterestYouTube