Helping Troubled Youths

Last night Kate and John Butler spoke to us about their charity organisation, Vitae, which was formed in 2006 to redirect young males who are heading down a pathway to delinquency.

These boys are not yet criminals, but are on the verge and need intervention. Generally, they lack a good male role model and this is what Vitae seeks to provide.

The Vitae Challenge is a 12-month program directed to 11 – 13 year-old boys and relies on school counsellors to identify those boys who are at risk.

Generally, these youths are mostly on the south side of the river and mainly in the Logan area.

The Challenge costs about $2,500 per child and consists of 2 phases; Bush and Mateship.

The Bush phase is 2 x 5-day sailing trips to Stradbroke Island, spaced about one month apart, which separates them from external influences and develops a sense of self-worth, self-reliance and teamwork.

The Mateship phase provides the boys with an alternate older male role model who can act as a mentor and requires that person to spend about 6 – 8 hours per month, keeping in contact with the boy by phone or other electronic means weekly and by a face to face monthly meeting which could be a simple chat, a meal or attendance at a sporting match or other function or activity—the range of activities is unlimited as long as the activity does not expose the boy to any danger or illegality.

For further detail please visit their website

Rotary Club of Brisbane Taylor Bridge member, Coreen Auld, thanks John for their presentation to the meeting.