Early Links Supporting Inclusion

The team putting YOU in youth

Early Links Youth Group Team

By Shanelle Pescud

Marketing & Communication Officer


Introducing our Youth Group Coordinators – Abbie, Georgia, Harry, Josh and Liv. They collectively facilitate our Fun Factory, Junior Fun Factory, Job Readiness, and Life Skills programs to engage youth in our community. We recently sat down with the team to talk about all things ‘you’th!

What do you like most about your role?

We love making a difference and that no two days are the same. Watching everyone grow and get better at what they want to excel at, like accessing activities in the community that they might not otherwise be able to, building their social skills and making new friends. We find our roles super rewarding!

Why do you guys love being part of the Youth Group Team?

Working in the Youth Group Team means there is never a dull day. We work well together and have established great friendships as a result. Collaborating with like-minded people who share the interest of advocating for our young people to receive the best support and opportunities we can, makes working within the team rewarding and easy. We’re all so different, but we get along and balance each other out.

Youth Coordinator Liv with a client

Liv with Fun Factory participant, Amber

What has been your most memorable experience in the groups you facilitate?

An overnight trip to Sydney during Vivid last year because we could see the group’s appreciation for the experience. Getting to see the young people have the time of their lives at Luna Park and the Sydney Aquarium or staying in a fancy hotel, the little things that many of us sometimes take for granted.

We have also loved getting to know them all and seeing how far they have come since starting the groups. It’s heartwarming to see how excited the young people get when they see us and the friends they have made in the different groups.

How do you create sessions, in particular activities for the school holiday programs?

They always give us ideas, and we plan sessions in collaboration with them. We always try to do something that they wouldn’t get to do otherwise. We believe in promoting the autonomy of our clients, and having their input in choosing what we do each session helps them to engage and contributes to making the groups a safe space they all enjoy coming to.

We pick up on people’s conversations in the sessions, and you hear them say, “we should do this one day”, so we make it happen. We don’t want them to be doing something they wouldn’t enjoy. Otherwise, they’re unlikely to participate or want to return to the group, and we want to continue engaging them.

For our more structured groups, like Life Skills and Job Readiness, we look at the capacity and goals of our clients and tailor sessions to address these considerations. The school holiday program revolves around accessing as many different activities in the community as possible.

How do you believe you’re making a difference to the youth in your community?

“The youth team brings out the best in me.” – James, Fun Factory participant

By giving them a voice and choice and creating a safe space they want to keep coming back to is our biggest difference.

Providing mentorship and a place to build relationships is beneficial for our young people in developing their social and life skills, and we believe we are significantly contributing to building up the confidence and independence of our youth.

What’s next?

The team are excited to share a few things planned for the July school holidays program, with another overnight stay in Sydney booked, visiting Hijinx Hotel, Taronga Zoo, The Opera House and The Sydney Harbour Bridge.

Find out more

Find out what the Youth Group Team is getting up to this school holidays by visiting the website’s Youth Groups School Holidays section, or getting in touch below.

Get in touch


Contact us


Refer to us

Get in touch

You may also like…

The Early Links Youth Hub

The Early Links Youth Hub

Senior Leader Teens & AdultsEarly Links runs a number of youth groups at our offices and in the community. We have...

Awarding our team’s hard work

Awarding our team’s hard work

Marketing and Communications OfficerWe have had a fantastic response to the first half of this year's awards season....