As part of its 2010 election platform, the Victorian Coalition party committed to investing $30.1 million over the term of government to establish three, purpose-built, 40-unit Education First Youth Foyers on TAFE land in metropolitan and regional Victoria. On taking government, the State Minister for Housing (the Hon. Wendy Lovell), in collaboration with the Minister for Education (the Hon. Peter Hall), together with the Brotherhood of St Laurence and Hanover (now Launch Housing), led the development of these three Foyers. To facilitate their implementation, the (then) Minister for Housing established the Employment and Youth Support Initiatives Development Inter-Agency Steering Committee. Chaired by the Hon. Rob Knowles, and initially resourced by the Youth Foyer Development Working Group, the Foyer Inter-Agency Steering Committee included members from the Victorian Government Department of Human Services, Department of Premier and Cabinet, Department of Education and Early Childhood Development, Australian Industry Group, Victorian Employers’ Chamber of Commerce and Industry (VECCI) and the Chief Executive Officers of Hanover and the Brotherhood of St Laurence. The Committee had overall responsibility for the development and implementation of the EFY Foyers. It was also responsible for, and had oversight of, a robust evaluation to assess whether the Model is fit for purpose, value for money and has potential for replication. As part of its work, the Foyer Inter-Agency Steering Committee endorsed the following key documents, developed by Hanover and the Brotherhood St Laurence, to guide the development, implementation and evaluation of the EFY Foyers:
EFY Foyers represent an innovative cross-government approach centered on building and consolidating the successful participation in mainstream education, training and employment of young people who are homeless or at risk of experiencing homelessness.
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Artwork title: Bungil
Artist: Aunty Janice Bakes (Elder, Indigenous Education Centre)
Bungil is the protector of the land and the creator