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More funding for youth justice intervention programmes

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media
Paula Bennett
Paula Bennett

Wellington, June 1 NZPA - A programme to help young offenders, especially Maori, is getting funding redirected to it after high demand.

Social Development Minister Paula Bennett said demand outstripped the initial funding round of $350,000 so she has redirected $550,000 from Child, Youth and Family baseline funding.

One hundred and fifteen applications were received for the funding.

"I'm really impressed with the response from communities and providers who are serious about working with troubled youth," Ms Bennett said.

"Providers have a range of innovative ideas to connect with young offenders, and address their behaviour to help turn their lives around."

The Innovation Fund is part of the Fresh Start suite of programmes and one focus was to reduce the high numbers of young Maori within youth justice.

"Successful applicants include mentoring and early intervention and marae or camp based programmes specifically targeting young Maori as well as female offenders - these initiatives can make a real difference."

A national selection panel chaired by former National MP Katherine Rich, met last month to assess the applications and make recommendations.

A second round of funding for $1.40 million for 2010/2011 opens on June 7.

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