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Gemma’s new NEET role is vital for Warwickshire young people

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Published on: October 27, 2022

Our children and young people’s drug and alcohol service covering the whole of Warwickshire has now got a vital new string to its bow.

Experienced compass staff member Gemma Austin has stepped into the role of drugs and alcohol worker for those young people who are not in Education, Employment or Training (NEET).

Stuart Haste, Service Manager said: “The NEET role forms a key part of Warwickshire’s Children Children and Young People’s Drug and Alcohol Service by increasing the emphasis on prevention, early intervention and community-based recovery.

Gemma’s role works directly with ‘at risk’ and priority groups of young people who are truants or are excluded from school, educational or employment settings and are affected by substance misuse.

He explained it provides services through a hub and spoke model approach via co-locations and peripatetic working in partners’ premises across the county.

It forms part of Compass’s development programme around risk groups and clients. The service will proactively work in the community, with flexible working hours to accommodate the needs of the young people. I believe the service will provide positive outcomes with-in a short period of time, due to staff focus and Compass values.

Gemma said the role would involve one to one work with young people. Gaining trust and understanding the individual’s issues and how they would like to change and then helping them to improve their lives, bringing in the skills and resources of other local organisations.

She said: “They might come with anger or frustration. And I think it’s just about spending enough time just to listen. I think that listening in itself can just be really important to someone. But it’s a journey. And it can take a long time, but, it works. And it I’ve seen it work.”

And she added: “You know, I genuinely care about everyone I work with. I want to help them get the best possible outcome, but it’s about them as well. “