Vital youth organisation in doubt

Doubt has been cast over the future of an organisation that supports disengaged youth, after funding was ceased in the Federal Government’s 2014/15 budget.

Baw Baw Latrobe Local Learning and Employment Network chief executive Mick Murphy said the group received funding from both state and federal governments, with the federal funding making up 75 per cent.

Baw Baw Latrobe LLEN aims to improve the education, training and employment outcomes of 10 to 19 year olds, focusing on those disengaged from education and training and not in meaningful employment.

Mr Murphy said the LLENs did not know yet how the State Government would respond to this funding cessation, but said the state did not necessarily provide enough funding to solely sustain the organisation.

“The reality is only a quarter of the total amount is not enough,” he said.

Mr Murphy said he hoped to have more information regarding the networks’ future by LLEN’s quarterly meeting on Friday, but did not know if this would be the case.

A spokesperson for Education Minister Martin Dixon said total funding from the federal and state governments in 2014 for LLEN was $13.3 million. “In the context of the 2014/15 federal budget, we are working with stakeholders to develop transition arrangements to ensure we can continue to support young people through pathways to learning, training and employment,” the spokesperson said.