Interview with Carinthia Government

After Care policies to fight youth exclusion thanks to the “A Way Home project”  will be piloted at regional level in Carinthia. Can you tell us why it is important for your region and what you will do concretely.

First of all I’d like to say that we are very happy to cooperate with Flanders again. During our first cooperation-project “After Care Guarantee” we noticed a big demand on after care strategies for the care leaver. Since our participation a lot of initiatives started to promote the care leaver topic in Carinthia. For example the Diakonie, the second Carinthian Project Partner of A Way Home, participated in an Austrian-wide project that had the goal to understand the concrete situation of care leavers and to set up support measures for this target group. The results of these projects confirm the necessity of a follow up-initiative like AWH. What’s needed is a common understanding of the special situation care leavers are facing. That means to inform the main stakeholders about the needs of care leavers. Simply spoken this is what we plan to do in Villach during our pilot-action.  That’s the work FOR the target group.

We only have one goal: To enable young care leaver to succeed in their daily, independent life

A second action will focus on the work WITH the target group. In this practical part of the project we will implement an after care worker who trains the care staff on how to deal with care leavers. We really hope to get positive feedback from the care leavers on that. After all we only have one goal: To enable young care leaver to succeed in their daily, independent life.

At European Level 3 European networks joined forces in the “A Way Home project”, the Youth Care Platform, ENSA and FEANTSA. How do you think they could work to support the projects objectives at European level?

It’s important to use these networks to promote the topic. Raising the awareness that care leavers need a different support that other young people is one of our focus’ within the Youth Care Platform. Projects like AWH are a great opportunity to change the point of view. Our members are multipliers which spread the message in their organizations or administrations. You may call this lobbying. For a “product” that’s nothing less than a better future for young people.