Community Services

Under our service delivery arm, we currently service approximately 1000 children and young people each year. Our services are underpinned by a youth-development and strengths-based approach to practice which focuses on enhancing protective factors, building on existing capacities and resources, and equipping young people with the knowledge, skills and resources to support their aspirations, achieve life goals and maximise life opportunities.

MYSA's service delivery is informed by consultation and young people and their communities as well as research and needs analyses undertaken with the major universities in South Australia and other states.

Recent Activities

Youth Services

MYSA’s extensive youth services and programs are considered cutting edge.

Thebarton Senior College students enjoying our program at the school

As the leading youth settlement agency working with vulnerable and youth at risk in South Australia, MYSA’s services and programs cover a range of support needs including:

  • Casework and case management

  • Outreach (including street work)

  • Advocacy

  • Mental health

  • Drugs and alcohol

  • Financial counselling

  • Nutrition and hygiene

  • Housing and independent living program

  • Education and training

  • Employment and job readiness

  • Sport and recreation

  • Mentoring

  • Violence and conflict

  • Legal issues

  • Problem behaviours

  • Family conflict

  • Leadership

  • Bullying in schools

  • Parenting skills for young parents

  • Homework and employment clubs

  • Music and the arts

  • Computer labs and drop in centre

  • After school activities

  • Volunteer placement programs

  • Life skills development

Guys playing soccer.

MYSA's featured projects include:

The Hub

Strategic Project: The Hub (West End Safety Trial)

MYSA was approached in 2011 by the Department of Communities and Social Inclusion (DCSI) to coordinate the West End 'Hub' which is part of the WEST (West End Safety Trial). The WEST project was identified as a priority of the Capital City Committee in 2010.

Read More About The Hub

The City West Hub is an after-hours crisis service, located in Hindley Street. The program aims to enhance protective factors and ensure safe environments for young people accessing Adelaide CBD on Friday and Saturday nights between 10pm and 5am.

During these hours young people can access culturally sensitive drop in, assessment and transport services for young people from a range of backgrounds including Indigenous and Culturally and Linguistically Diverse young people.

Younger children and those engaged in offending and health risk behaviours are prioritised. MYSA undertakes a comprehensive assessment of each child and young person referred to the service. Based on this assessment, MYSA coordinates transport and case management support during the week to address areas of unmet need. MYSA follows up all referrals to ensure the needs of children and young people are being met and if necessary, coordinate alternative support.

People learning at The Hub.

Settlement , Engagement and Transition Support (SETS) Program

Under the SETS program, MYSA develops Personalised Development Plans and delivers case management support for young people who have been in Australia for less than five years based on where they are situated in the settlement process. Young people are supported in a range of areas including English language development, employment, education, housing, independent living, health and sport/arts/music/recreation.

Read More 'Sets'

The terms "at risk" and "vulnerable" are often used so broadly that almost any child or young person could qualify as being "at risk" or "vulnerable". Moreover, such definitions often appear to be based on mainstream realities, overlooking the unique factors that contribute to risk and vulnerability among those from diverse cultural backgrounds.

The terms "at risk" and "vulnerable" are used by MYSA to refer to the following groups:

  • Children/youth with a history of trauma

  • Children/youth experiencing parental abuse and neglect

  • Unaccompanied humanitarian minors

  • Youth who have lost or become separated from their families

  • Young asylum seekers

  • Homeless children/youth and those at risk of becoming homeless

  • Teenage mothers and young parents at risk

  • Children/youth with social, behavioural and mental health problems

  • Children/youth with drug and alcohol problems

  • Children/youth who have disengaged from school, family and community

MYSA's settlement work with multicultural youth includes:

  • Casework and case management

  • A central point for the sector to refer vulnerable and at risk clients

  • Outreach (including street work)

  • Housing program

  • Life skills program

  • Role modelling and mentoring

  • Sector support and capacity building

Program outcomes are achieved using a multi-pronged, integrated youth development approach that includes:

  • Individualised and intensive case management support including outreach and streetwork;

  • Group education and training programs including life skills development and mentoring;

  • Social, cultural, sporting, recreation and other community activities and;

  • Support for young families and parents with high and complex needs.

Photograph of the mens winning soccer team.

To keep up to date with current programs and initiatives or for more information see our ‘What’s On’ section.

Student Placement

MYSA offers students on placement an opportunity to:

  • Learn about the role, function and operation of a state representative advisory, advocacy and service delivery body.

  • Work with and learn from trained professionals.

  • Become involved in a range of program areas.

  • Gain practical experience to become effective workers.

  • Develop knowledge and skills in specific areas of interest.

  • Network and establish contacts in the field

If you are considering a career in this field or want to find out more, please fill out the form below. Please note we only accept applicants who are university students with social work backgrounds.


MYSA has established a strong research agenda to inform service development, delivery and evaluation as well as our policy and advocacy work as a state representative body.

Our research covers the breadth of young people's experiences. This includes:

  • The migration experience.

  • Settlement issues and needs.

  • Education, training and employment.

  • Mental health.

  • Police-youth relations.

  • Service utilisation.

  • Young people and public space.

  • Young women's health and wellbeing.

  • Social participation.

  • Youth at risk.


MYSA has also collaborated on a range of research projects with various universities and researchers, such as:

  • Rebuilding life after migration – Settlement Experiences of Refugee and Migrant Youth
    Australian Research Council – University of South Australia, University of Technology Sydney, Newcomer Center of Peel (Canada),  Institute for Multicultural Counseling & Education Services (United States), Australian Migrant Resource Centre.

  • Community and Radicalisation – An Examination of Perceptions, Ideas, Beliefs and Solutions throughout Australia
    Australian Multicultural Foundation

  • Young African Refugees’ Experiences of Peace and Violence in South Australia
    University of South Australia, PhD candidate

  • Multicultural Youth Issues in Australia
    Australian Research Alliance for Children

  • Refugee youth and their transition from school to further education, training and employment
    Australian Research Council – University of South Australia, University Of Adelaide, Australia

  • The CALD Youth Census Report 2014 - The First Australian Census Data Analysis Of Young People From Culturally And Linguistically Diverse Backgrounds
    Australian Population and Migration Research Centre (APMRC), Geography, Environment and Population School of Social Sciences, University of Adelaide on behalf of the Multicultural Youth Advocacy Network (MYAN) Australia

Policy Development

MYSA is embedded in a range of state and national policy networks to support robust service planning, more efficient use of resources, less duplication, improved communication and information exchange and increased capacity to address youth needs which span multiple service sectors.

Sector Development

MYSA provides information, advice, training and other support to the youth, community, multicultural and government sectors to enable them to more effectively respond to the needs of multicultural youth.

This work is informed by research undertaken in partnership with universities in South Australia and other states, the findings of which are used to inform innovative and responsive policy and service responses.


MYSA has delivered numerous cross-cultural presentations and training workshops to a diverse range of services across service sectors including housing, employment, health and mental health, youth justice, child protection, and settlement.

Guest speaker for MYSA

The effectiveness of MYSA's training is evidenced in the consistently positive feedback received from policy makers, program managers and frontline workers.

Hundreds of government and non government organisations, schools, universities, sporting bodies and private businesses have accessed customised training.

To find out more about the training offered by MYSA, complete the online training request form below.


MYSA has developed a range of resources and tools to support agencies across service sectors to effectively work with multicultural young people.

MYSA is committed to sharing its research and policy and practice experience with other stakeholders. A range of tools and resources are available free of charge for the youth, community, government and multicultural sectors to enable them to effectively support multicultural young people.


National Youth Settlement Framework


Australia’s first and only evidence-based national guide to benchmark good practice with young people from refugee and migrant backgrounds.



A series of animated videos translated into various languages providing information about the Covid-19 pandemic.

Effectively Using Interpreters


Tips and tricks for using interpreters when working with young people from refugee and migrant backgrounds.

Inclusion of Migrants through Sport


A series of frequently asked questions to support sporting groups and organisations create a culturally inclusive sporting environment.

Unaccompanied Humanitarian Minors


Provides an overview of the background and current challenges facing unaccompanied minors in SA.

My Safe Space: Refugee Youth Homelessness


Key findings of the MY SAFE SPACE research project, aimed at determining key factors contributing to refugee youth homelessness in SA.

MY Connections Strategies Paper


This paper provides insights into issues affecting refugee youth at risk to help service providers and communities engage and support them more effectively.

Sexual Health Fact Sheet


This Fact Sheet provides information and advice for developing youth-specific and culturally sensitive sexual health programs for refugees.

Building Bridges Paper (Police-Youth)


Provides a general introduction to engaging with Muslim youth in SA.

Under the Radar: Toolkit for Working with at Risk Youth


This 6-module resource provides service providers with information and practical strategies for working more effectively with refugee youth at risk.

Volunteer Handbook


This handbook provides service providers with information and practical strategies for engaging CALD young people in volunteering.

Anger Management Fact Sheet


This Fact Sheet provides specific information on some of the social issues that are contributing to anger and violence among refugee and migrant youth.

Step Up


This project analyses the nature and extent of problematic behaviours being exhibited by refugee youth late at night in the streets of Adelaide.

Just Hanging Out: Young Refugees and Public Space


The project was commissioned by the ACC in response to concerns about young refugee's use of public space in the Adelaide CBD.

Toolkit: A Practical Guide for Working with Multicultural Youth


This Toolkit contains 5 Modules, a series of Fact Sheets and an Appendix with practical advice for working with multicultural youth.

Out of the Blues: Working with Refugee and Migrant Young People and Mental Health


The handbook includes practical strategies for making mental health services for young refugees more culturally responsive and inclusive.

Speak Out2


This report highlights the findings of the Speak Out2 Multicultural Youth Forum regarding opinions and concerns on current issues affecting them.