Hand Heart Pocket has continued its support for child protection organisation Bravehearts as they work to help young people build better futures.
Since 2020 Hand Heart Pocket has supported Braveheart’s Turning Corners program for young people aged 12-17, which helps young people to change their behaviours, avoid criminal activity, and prevent other young people from being harmed.
The program provides specialist counselling and early intervention for young people who have engaged in, or are at risk of engaging in, harmful sexual behaviours, due to reasons ranging from curiosity to previous trauma.
On top of the $790,000 awarded in 2020 for two years, Hand Heart Pocket provided a further $400,000 this year to fund another year of the program.
Parents of the children involved in the program have consistently provided positive feedback about how the program is run, and the positive impacts on their children.
Bravehearts Director of Therapeutic and Support Services, Dr Deirdre Thompson, said Hand Heart Pocket’s support was two-fold – it has enabled more young people to access vital early intervention support and has also allowed Bravehearts to advocate for further funding by demonstrating the positive outcomes achieved through early intervention.
“We are continually looking at what it takes to reduce the incidence of child sexual abuse, and the Turning Corners program pilot provided a lot of insight about how to intervene early in behaviours that are very complex in nature,” Dr Thompson says.
“Hand Heart Pocket’s support is enabling us to further test and formally evaluate the program.”