Children & Family Directory
Level 1 Torrens Building
220 VICTORIA SQUARE SA 5000
GPO Box 2117
ADELAIDE SA 5001
The Youth Affairs Council of South Australia (YACSA) works to encourage young people, and those working with them and for them, to achieve meaningful improvements in the quality of young people's lives.
YACSA is governed by a Constitution, of which the objects are:
• To provide a body broadly representative of the issues and interests of young people and the youth affairs field in South Australia and represent State views at the national level
• To advocate for, assist with and support the development of policy positions on issues affecting young people and the youth affairs field, and to provide policy advice, perspectives and advocacy to Governments and the broader community
• To facilitate co-ordination and co-operation in the youth affairs field
• To support the development of the community youth sector through the provision of information, advice, referral and professional development activities
• To do all such other things as may be incidental to the attainment of such objects
The Intent of YACSA:
YACSA has a Management Committee, which is drawn from its membership. There are 12 individual representatives (including young people) and 24 youth worker network representatives. The full Management Committee meets every eight weeks, with the 9 person Executive Committee (all members of Management Committee) meeting in between.
The Management Committee is the overall governing body of the Council, and is responsible for adherence to the legal requirements of incorporation, financial accountability, employment of staff, planning and policy decisions and accountability to members and funding bodies.
The Executive Committee is elected by the Management Committee to oversee the financial, staffing policy and accountability functions of Council as authorised by the Management Committee.
The Youth Participation and Action Group (YPAG) is a subcommittee of the Management Committee. The YPAG membership is comprised of young people who are members of YACSA aged 12 to 25. YPAG provide advice to the Management Committee on the issues and interests of young people and public policy, along with informing the broader directions of the Council's work.
There are also policy and advocacy groups (PAGs), which meet on a needs basis. These groups, which have included health, housing and education, work to identify achievable outcomes for policy and advocacy in relation to young people. In early 2003, a Mental Health PAG was formed to address the growing issue of young people's mental health and well being and the needs of services to effectively respond to young people's mental health needs.
Current Activities of YACSA:
YACSA has a key role in policy advocacy on issues and interests related to youth affairs, undertaking both proactive and reactive policy work using the YACSA Policy Platform and State Budget Submission to put forward the shared position of its members. YACSA also provides comment on Government documents, State or Federal, which will impact on young people and the youth sector and uses the media to put forward its policy position to the community ensuring they are kept informed on young people and the issues affecting them.
YACSA provides support to 24 youth worker networks whose members provide services to young people. Each network has a nominated YACSA representative who is the liaison person between YACSA and the network. These representatives are also members of YACSA's Management Committee. The support provided by YACSA includes the development of a monthly news report, facilitation of planning days and forums, attendance at meetings, and advocacy on issues that are impacting or will impact on service delivery.
Youth participation is fundamental to YACSA's operations. Young people are members of YACSA (with free membership) and its Management and Executive Committee. On joining YACSA, young people automatically become members of YPAG, the youth-developed and run component of YACSA. YPAG has regular meetings, but for those who can't come there is an email-group. YPAG members also operate as the youth forum for Adelaide City Council through the Young Voices program. External to its operations, YACSA provides advice to other organisations and agencies on how they can include young people in their decision-making processes.
YACSA provides information services to its membership through a bi-monthly newsletter, e-groups, library, consultation processes and forums. YACSA also has a website, which is accessible to members and non-members.