ENHANCING SUPPORT FOR AT-RISK CHILDREN AND YOUTH
1 MSF will pilot two key initiatives to better support at-risk children and youths, (i) a Localised Community Network pilot and (ii) a lengthening of Post-Care Support for youths discharged from MSF Youth Homes. This in line with the work of the National Committee on Prevention, Rehabilitation and Recidivism (NCPR) to develop and implement a coordinated and integrated approach to prevent offending and re-offending, and enhance the rehabilitation of offenders.
Localised Community Networks (LCN)
2 The Localised Community Network (LCN) pilot will better support children/youths with opportunities to succeed in life, despite familial and other challenges they may face. This pilot will enhance existing support for children/youths and their families, involving relevant Government agencies, schools, Voluntary Welfare Organisations (VWOs), community organisations and volunteers, through:
- Facilitating data sharing between relevant government agencies, to have a better understanding of the challenging family circumstances that children/youths may face
- Bringing together relevant partners to coordinate the support required, to help these children/youths with complex families or at-risk behaviours, such as chronic absenteeism.
3 Challenging and complex family circumstances can affect students’ behaviour, engagement and attendance in school. Today, once a school identifies a student as being at-risk, it will act as a key triage touchpoint to initiate discussions across community agencies, to provide holistic support for the student and his family:
- The pilot leverages referral protocols and structures that MSF is putting in place to strengthen social service delivery. We will be rolling out new case coordination guidelines (CASE MAP1) to all towns so that agencies share a common understanding of the family’s needs and align their interventions..
4 This pilot will involve schools, Family Service Centres (FSCs), VWOs, community partners and volunteers in the Boon Lay/Jurong West region, where they can tap on the local SG Cares Community Network to foster stronger partnerships. This pilot will also complement UPLIFT’s efforts to provide more holistic and coordinated support for students who exhibit long-term absenteeism or emerging attendance issues.
Lengthening of Post-Care Support for Youths Discharged from MSF Youth Homes
5 For a smoother transition and better reintegration of youth into the community after their discharge from MSF Youth Homes2, post-care support will be extended from two months to one year and tiered in intensity according to risks and needs of the youths:
- The pilot programme of the extended post-care support with selected youths (about 15-20) is targeted to commence in Q3 2019.
- It will be progressively expanded in 2020 to include every youth discharged from MSF Youth Homes.
6 MSF will work with appointed VWO partners to assign post-care officers to journey with the youths in the community and link them to constructive sources of engagement such as school, employment or/and interest groups, so that they can develop stable and healthy relationships.
7 The lengthening of post-care support will help sustain and reinforce the work done (e.g. skills learnt and habits formed) with the youths during their stay at the MSF Youth Homes. It also strengthens the connection with community agencies that were established while the youths were residing in the Homes.
8 The post-care officers would also collaborate with key stakeholders, families and volunteers to monitor the youth’s progress and ensure that the youths remain meaningfully engaged (e.g. in school, training, and employment).
ISSUED BY MINISTRY OF SOCIAL AND FAMILY DEVELOPMENT
Annexes - Enhancing Support for At-Risk Children and Youths.pdf