"It's a really good thing that has happened for these communities because it has changed my life and the communities because before the kids didn't have anything to do. Kids used to just do bad stuff, before this thing was in place. The community has made a change." - Bernice Fred (Jigalong Community Martu youth worker)
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The Martu Trust School Holiday Program is the flagship program for the Martu Trust. The program is run every holidays on 6 Martu communities across the Western Desert region of Western Australia. The program was designed by the Martu Youth Workers on each of the communities to alleviate boredom and associated behaviour including petrol sniffing, vandalism, car theft and other petty youth crime over school holiday periods.
Martu Trust engaged RPM Project Management over a four year period, to develop and implement the program which first ran in January 2011. The program engages over 350 youth every holiday period. Since the program began the Police have noted a significant reduction in crimes, including 0 reported incidences of volatile substance use and antisocial behaviour amongst the Martu youth during the school holidays.
There are currently 25 Martu Youth Workers who are working on the program and 16 of these workers are enrolled and studying youth work through the University of Notre Dame. The program will be run on each of the communities by the Martu Youth Workers in 2015.