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Street Beat Case Studies

Street Beat Case Studies

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Published by adamfblakester

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Categories:Types, Research
Published by: adamfblakester on Feb 05, 2012
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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StreetBeat Evaluation: Case Studies
The child that acts unlovable needs to be loved.
Executive Summary 
The young people interviewed about the value and usefulness of StreetBeat for them identifiedprofound positive outcomes and changes in their lives which they attribute in significant part to thesupport of StreetBeat workers.
“I wouldn’t have got my Year 10 certificate and Cert II in welding and engineering – which is half way to my ticket. I'm more mature, more sensibleand don’t always resort to violence or skitz out. I handle things better, walkaway sometimes.” “I could have had teeth missing, brain damage – there are that many fight situations going on at night... They are saving us from the dangers of night, people coming back from the pub (like some kid from the Kilda that got smashed up).” “I’d probably be dead. They [StreetBeat] took me to the hospital. I don’t remember. Footpatrol called up StreetBeat and told them that I was drunk. I was found with Deb, we were legless, and they [StreetBeat] took us to hospital.” “The main thing I can see now everybody’s parents love them, even if thechildren don’t see it, and they worry about them, and it [StreetBeat] keeps themsafe.” 
Outcomes such as these, were as a minimum three young people have significantly turnedaround their lives, prompts the strategic question of what the economic and social value of these results are. How many outcomes like these are required to justify and demonstratethe value for money of the StreetBeat Program? Particularly when research highlights thatthe long term impacts and costs of the life pathways these young people were on are sosubstantial – often intergenerational in their timescale.
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StreetBeat Evaluation: Case Studies
The child that acts unlovable needs to be loved.
These case studies form part of the evaluation of the StreetBeat program. The case studies have been drawn from interviews with five young people, though most extensively with three of them –two young males aged 17 and 18, and a young female aged 16 – some of their family members, anddiscussions with four workers from the StreetBeat program.These young people's stories, experiences and outcomes are illustrative of the StreetBeat model andits value, successes and of course shortcomings and barriers as well. While there was a desire to avoid very complex cases such as where DoCS were heavily involved,and this is stated with the greatest respect to the young people involved, these young people havenonetheless had very complex and difficult lives.
The Big Picture
The first time StreetBeat came into contact with this young Aboriginal girl she was in a car park,doing fellatio on a sleezy guy in exchange for a cigarette. She doesn't even smoke. For her now knitting – a personal project set up by one of the workers – is one of the favourite things in her life:'If I hadn’t done knitting I would be out getting drunk. I stay home now and go out less. I sill drink  but I stay out of trouble.' One of the StreetBeat workers says:
“These kids we love. I bought her a present for her 16
birthday because no one else did.” 
The young boy, now eighteen year old, was known to many of the StreetBeat workers for most of his life. In their words he had the worst home life they have ever known. He was raised by his littlesister, his mother had serious alcohol and drug dependencies, he was most likely to have survivedchild sexual assault, was doing break and enters, smoking cones, always out, never home. This young person was notorious, and while DoCS, Police and Schools were involved there were noservices or supports in place. His self esteem was shot, he had no belief in himself and didn’t care if he lived or died. Perhaps this is why he seemed to have no fear at all of doing stupid stuff.This young man is in the story below, named under the pseudonym “Greg”:
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StreetBeat Evaluation: Case Studies
The child that acts unlovable needs to be loved.
Excerpt, PhD Thesis on Armidale youth, Helena PastorChapter: Fuckin’ ‘Whatever’ Isn’t an Answer
The talk shifts to a big party the night before, someone’s eighteenth. “Half my fuckin’ school was there!” blurts Jordy, “There were busted beer bottles all overthe street!”Bernie says he was out driving the Streetbeat car till four o’clock in the morning.Streetbeat is a local crime prevention program, where youth workers trawl thestreets on Friday and Saturday nights, keeping kids out of trouble and away fromthe lock-up. “The party just went all night. All we heard from the police was, ‘Can you go to …’ There were kids goin’ into other people’s yards and I thought, oh it’snot goin’ to end well.”Bernie looks across to Thommo: “What are you grinnin’ about?”Thommo shakes his head, stares down at his feet with a bashful smile.“I only had four beers last night,” Thommo says in a low voice, like it’ssomething different for him.“Very impressed with that, mate,” says Bernie, suddenly serious. “That was themost impressive thing I saw all night.”“What happened, Thommo?” asks Simmo. “Were you crook?”“No, he wasn’t crook,” says Bernie. “He was just bein’ sensible.”The third young person interviewed had significant alcohol and drug problems, with a lack of parental supervision and one parent who in fact encouraged this behaviour. It was a 'free for all' athis house. 'One night there were 200 kids there, smashed, running out on highway, jumping infront of semi’s and throwing beer bottles.' Smoking 30 plus cones of marijuana per day has hadserious health implications for this youth, and a heavy cash flow requirement. He says: 'The weedused to make me depressed, keep thinking all the time. I realized I was worrying my family, I wantto enjoy myself but at the same time I want them to be happy. I know now I only live once, move onfrom my problems and enjoy your life while it lasts.'This young man has now completed Year 10, wants to complete maths and English in Year 12 so he
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