Building the Evidence Base for Good Youth Work

7 July 2022

Building the Evidence Base for Good Youth Work: an opportunity to share materials about your work, for an evidence review about Youth Work, Agency and Empowerment

The Department of Communities and Justice (DCJ) has commissioned a Review to pull together the evidence on how youth work can foster agency and empowerment. There has long been a need for sound evidence to support youth work practice, identified by Youth Work peak bodies including Youth Work NSW (the professional association for youth workers in NSW) and Youth Action (the NSW peak body representing young people and the services who support them). The Research Centre for Children and Families at the University of Sydney is undertaking the Review and the findings will be embedded on the DCJ Evidence Portal. The idea is that the Review will be a resource for youth workers in informing their work and making the argument for its effectiveness.

We are aware that there is a lot of information about youth work that never makes it into journals or other publications. So that we don’t miss this information, we are asking if your agency has any reports, articles, evaluations, or any other materials that speak to your work in this space, that describe your programs and practices and contribute to the following topics:

  1. ‘What is youth work?’ Including definitions and history
  2. Theories underpinning youth work
  3. Types of youth work interventions, and evidence for their effectiveness
    1. Interventions and relationships
    2. Interventions and advocacy, participation, agency, or empowerment
  4. The youth work profession
    1. Formal youth work education/training
    2. Professional development, professional identity and ‘professionalization’
    3. Supervision and management
    4. Experiences of youth workers in the field
  5. State of practice in Australia

Types of submissions could include:

  • External evaluations of services and programs within youth work
  • Internal evaluations of services and programs within youth work
  • Write-ups or reports of service models
  • Articles
  • Network briefings
  • Practice guidance or policy with themes of agency, empowerment, youth advocacy or participation
  • Conference presentations

If your organisation is interested in contributing information and has questions, please email Professor Amy Conley Wright, Project Lead, or phone 0490 433 796.

Your contribution is needed by Friday 20 July. Email contributions to: [email protected]

For more information about the Research Centre for Children and Families, click here.