Since launching Thankyou New Zealand back in 2018, we’ve been on a journey to find a local impact partner to help those in need right here in our backyard.
We’d like to introduce you to Lifewise and some of the incredible work they are doing on the ground within the vulnerable communities of Auckland, New Zealand. Lifewise is committed to preventing and ending youth homelessness through sustainable solutions.
Lifewise take a holistic approach that focuses on improving the health, well-being and future opportunities for youth who are at extreme risk of homelessness. Their aim is to address multiple and complex issues that affect an individual’s access to training, education and employment. As well as helping to reduce psychological and financial barriers, including life challenges and trauma, by supporting at-risk youth until they can transition into adulthood. The team acknowledge that sustainable change begins with providing stable, safe and supportive environments where youth can make informed decisions and take the necessary steps toward their own employment and independence.
What we're funding
In order to implement long-term solutions, Lifewise are initiating a pilot internship program, and deploying a youth employment specialist to assist in development and bridge the gap between employers and young at-risk individuals.
This pilot will provide 21 internships to individuals between the ages 16-24-years-old, who are either homeless, at risk of becoming homeless, or have a serious housing need.
The approach is to eliminate youth homelessness by addressing complex issues. That's why the program is designed to improve self-esteem, self-confidence and assist with opportunities for these at-risk youth to earn an income, and experience breakthroughs in their mental wellbeing.
With a goal to encourage self-sufficiency the program will utilise a positive youth development approach, where each youth will receive opportunities to exercise leadership, build key skills and get involved in their communities.
The internship will ensure youth are safe, thriving, and learn the skills to live independently within their own extended family, wider community and ultimately are able to integrate into society.
How it works
The program is underpinned by the Individual Placement Support model (IPS). IPS is an approach that allows Lifewise to initiate a collaborative relationship between both, the at-risk youth and the employer. This intensive and individually tailored support style is effective in ensuring youth receive immediate help in finding a job, as well as ongoing support with their employer to ensure they remain employed.
A number of different vocational choices will be provided, and from these choices, each youth will use a strengths-based approach to find their best fit. The process is designed to be empowering, and allows youths to trial a range of different positions that help them to discover their purpose, and find their career path.
Lifewise will match each youth with a supportive employer. The employer then will become a key part of their development process and overall journey towards a balanced mind, body, and spirit.
As the IPS approach is successfully implemented, it will enable an inclusive and responsive system that reduces barriers, and provides an effective individual-centered service for youth as needed.
The program is underpinned by the aim to successfully transition youth into adulthood, both economically and vocationally, and effectively change lives by lowering the risk of homelessness.
A HUGE thanks!
Our range exists for impact. So, whether you purchased one, or one hundred Thankyou products – we want to give you a shout out!
We’re so excited to partner with Lifewise and support their team on this remarkable journey to build stronger and resilient communities in New Zealand.