Youth at risk

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This overview provides a synopsis of the current knowledge base. Having considered all the information, we make sense of it by taking a stab at the following: 1) What are the priority issues that deserve attention, 2) What are opportunity areas that community or voluntary organisations can already take action on, and 3) What knowledge gaps deserve further investigation?

Priority Issues

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Actionable Opportunity Areas

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Knowledge Gaps

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See Sector Report by Just Cause Asia

Juvenile Delinquents

Youth Mental Health

Substance Abuse

Crime & Delinquency

Youth Depression in the Family Context: Familial Risk Factors and Models of Treatment (


Youth at Risk

  • Inter-Ministry Committee on Youth Crime (2002): Those who have been subjected to a combination of interrelated biological, psychological, and social factors that result in a greater likelihood for the development of delinquency, substance abuse, or other related anti-social and self destructive behaviours
  • Youthreach (a joint initiative by CWS and BoysTown) [1]: Youth not well engaged in school, negative peer influence, frustration and intolerance, poor decision making skills.

Key Statistics & Figures

CYGO defines at risk as about 300 per year (or rather they have secured funding to serve 300). general conduct, peer related issues, risk of dropping out. Left it to each agency to streamline. CYGO found that there is no clear definition of youth at risk, hoping this initiative will help them clarify this definition.

Youth offenders

  • [To Do: Insert findings of National Youth Survey of NYC, and Youth Statistics; refer to Singstat; Useful to have figures or projections for where the youths are distributed for purpose of service planning: eg whether they are in Tampines or Sengkang; useful to insert figures for marriage between minors, or one partner is a minor: In 2016, 0.4 male and 1.7 female for every 1000 unmarried citizens aged 15 to 19 are married.]

Youth substance abuse

  • According to the drug situation report (2016) [2] CNB arrested a total of 3,265 drug abusers in 2016. This was a 2% decrease from the 3,343 drug abusers arrested in 2015. While the number of repeat drug abusers arrested decreased by 6%, from 2,034 in 2015 to 1,917 in 2016, the number of new drug abusers arrested increased by 3%, from 1,309 in 2015 to 1,348 last year. Close to two-thirds of new abusers arrested were youths under 30 years of age.
  • See other figures in Youth Substance Abuse page.

Legislation & Key Policies

  • Children and Young Persons Act: Requirement for all Children and Young Persons Homes to be licensed. All cases of children residing in Homes will be reviewed by a Review Board comprising independent members from the community, to ensure that there are proper care plans in place for children, and also conduct visits to the Homes to ensure that residents have a safe environment (MSF webpage)
  • Smaller agencies currently running the programmes will stop receiving new cases from MSF so that the programmes can be centralised at the two integrated service providers' centres in Woodlands and Clementi. Eventually, MSF will roll out such providers all over Singapore (ST 16 Nov 2016)
  • YARE program

Desired impact for target group

  • At risk youth - strengthening of internal resource to overcome adversity, see improvement in decision or coping skills; meaningful engagement - ie they have to enjoy and find fulfillment in attending school, relationship with adult figures and peers. Enjoyment is important (combination of both productive behavior and social relationships)
  • In risk - Successful re-integration to family and community. remain offence free. taste success in what they are doing, by their own definition... dreams and goals. Walk out not thinking they have served a sentence, but they have done something useful. [There is a community developed]
  • --
  • -Less engaged students - Students Care Service uses psycho-social indicators to measure. School engagement scale. too difficult to chase social workers and school for figures. also do not know how sensitive they are to schools. hard to track (see School Social Work in Students Care Service)
  • -NEETs- stay in school, finish education, can ask schools for data. (Not sure if schools will give data. Also check Enhanced Step-Up data).
  • -Juveniles delinquents - goal is no recidivism. Hope it is the last time we see them in Guidance Program. MSF shares recidivism numbers to Students Care Service. Estimate about less than 5-10%.
  • -- Reaching their potential, meaningful contribution to society [care: KPIs-check improvement indicators like staying in school...Kirkpatrick model; qualify to be student leaders, ready able and willing to take on leadership, eg 1/5 of cohort of a htousand will be able to do that]

Areas of Needs / Desired Outcomes


Preventive,Reversal of mindset, provision of alternative goals

AON 1: Preventive Measures

Familial Support

Desired Outcome: (imptance of familial support)

There are two reasons why familial support may be lacking from the lives of the youth: 1) they do not have the prior capacity needed to engage with the youth 2) even with capacity, they do not have handles in broaching the subject.

  • Synopsis: [To insert]
  • Statistics: [To insert]

Increasing capacity

Reasons for the lack of capacity
  • Jobs
  • Mental Health issues
  • Expectation

positive parenting?

  • Similarly, most of us disagree that a dysfunctional or a broken family can raise up youths that have good behaviour and attitude. I think it is mostly based on one’s mindset and the values that was taught by their family since they were born. It is true that a broken marriage will affect the children but if the child have the correct mindset from young, they will understand that his/her parents have to separate based on personal issues. For instance, in this case, when this girl was a teen and her parents separated. They can’t even afford to rent a room for her child and herself, she was also sick that time and her daughter have to fend herself in studying, lodging and meals. It was the most difficult times the child can have in her life of having to take care of herself and worrying about her mother conditions. The separation between her parents affects her so much that she was supposed to be staying at home studying, going out with friends but now she have to do everything by herself without the father figure in her life. She skipped school, failed many modules and was almost expel from Nafa school and asked to pay back the scholarship money. As what I can see, this affects her mindset towards life without having a proper family. Despite having so many problems in front of her (17 years old) she continue to work hard because of her mother's medical bills and the support of her secondary school art teacher. In the end, she managed to graduate from Nafa art school and became an art teacher in peirce school. From this, I can see that even if a child came from a broken family, they can still strive hard and achieve better as compared to other children from a happy family. It is all based on their mindset and their ability to continue to work hard for their life and not doing anything that is illegal. This 17 years old girl did have bad company friends but she did not follow what they do because she knew what is wrong and what is right so prior teaching when they are young are very important as it sets their mindset right before they come into contact with the society. (
  • Family dynamics in Singapore are shifting, families are getting smaller. With smaller families, parents are likely to provide greater resources and support to their children and shower their children with love and attention. Some parents may even splurge on their children to help them succeed in life. Children grow more dependent on their parents that they are not able to deal with tough situations. Parents unhealthily give in to their children [An example is when a child wants to buy a toy, but he already has lots of toys at home, these parents are always giving in to their children which eventually will lead the children to think that they are entitled to what their parents provide for them and when these children do not get what they want, they throw tantrum, and as they grow older, they might neglect their parents and turn into other unhealthy methods of getting what they want when their parents no longer give in to them.]
  • Besides school guidance, it is important to have good role models for parents. Parents are the first immediate form of socialization. Youths and children have to be guided, disciplined and taught the right things. Such as being positive, hanging out with the right peers, being a good student that follows school rules and laws. Family is a really important factor for a child's behavior and attitude. If the children are brought up to be well-disciplined and obedient, they will not end up doing drugs or alcohol.
  • Negative family support and parenting can bring forth many unforeseen negative action a children can do. In my perspective, negative family support and parenting mean that parents failed to show concern on their children’s everyday lives. Parents failing to show concern will never know what the morals and values the children adopt. This lead to children doing crimes because of the lack of supervision from the parents as they have no guidance to know what is right or wrong. This can be seen in crime cases in overseas. Children as young as an age of eleven intrude a home with a gun. Another case would be a student at an age of fifteen actually scheme a plan to kidnap her follow classmate to beat her up with a crowbar. [3]Parent depression is the most important risk factor for several types of youth psychopathology, including depression. Whereby Parent depression is more important than family discord, low cohesion, and “affection less control".
  • There are several parent and family risk factors associated with youth depression. Parental cognition, parental pathology, parenting behaviors of warmth and emotional availability, individual coping with the family environment, and family conflict, etc
  • Only 32% of the depression treatments tested in clinical trials included parents in any capacity. The overall effectiveness of treatments that work solely with children and adolescents is very similar to that of treatments that include parents as agents of change.
  • [Not much supervision at home. Captures latchkey to dysfunctional families. Just knowing where your kids are day to day, the higher risk families do not know. [When there is no supervision at home, it is likely that parents do not know where their kids are or what they are doing. It could be that that the parents put their trust in their kids to behave when they are alone, are okay with what their kids are doing as long as they do not get into trouble with the law, or they just do not care. When parents do not take note of what their children are doing, it is possible that a group of them who take advantage of this opportunity and commit deviant acts. Thus, the higher the chance of having a child that does not behave well or is a 'bad apple'.]] [Parents should not only be involved in their children's school activities but also be interested in the activities they do outside of school to know what they like and what their hobbies are. This way, the children will feel more loved in the family.]
  • [Very little involvement in their schooling, eg when their exams are, whether they do their homework, who their friends are. Sometimes, some children need more love, care and attention from their parents so as to get through the day. For example, when a parent takes not and keeps track of what their child is doing (but not too excessively), the child will feel that their parent really cares for them. For some, they do not receive this kind of attention from their parents, thus they feel like their parents do not care about them, resulting into them seeking what they lack from other people, sometimes, from bad company. Due to this, the child could turn to deviant acts just to fill in the void in them that their parents left.]
  • [Abuse within the family. Based on the findings from the Ministry of Social and Family Development titled Child Abuse Investigations dated 4 April 2017 at this link, [], the rate of abuse; be it physical, sexual or neglection, has increased over a span on 7 years, starting from 2009. Adding on to that, this leads to the increase of these victims feeling hopeless, unimportant and such. Hence, these people seek what they lack of from other sources; bad company usually]
  • Children who feel a lack of attention from parent's may even start using drugs and taking alcohol. Without guidance from family, children may not know why it is wrong to abuse drugs and alcohol. Parents who do not set good examples may cause their children to be influenced by them. Such as taking up their parents habit of drinking alcohol at home. Children may secretly take a sip of parents drinks. [Some parents do not really bother or care about what their children do. Hence, if their child is underage and he or she consumes alcohol, the parents do not reprimand them for doing so. Eventually, their children started drinking more frequently and also convince their friends to drink with them.] Puberty, however, is the most widely accepted indicator of the beginning of adolescence. The physical changes associated with puberty are the most obvious indication that adolescence has begun. The 'growth spurt' and maturation and consequent reproductive and social maturity, can be an reminder to parents that their child is growing up.
  • Low-income families, both parents spend their whole time working, or someone incarcerated. Blended families and single parent families...but typically lower income as well. Maybe even four room. rarely five room flat dwellers will have these issues. Blended family - problem because of previous problems, eg biological parents incarcerated. typically a host of problems. when marriage breaks down, whether rich or poor, it affects the child. But doubly hard if you are from low-income family. eg remarry because of incarceration. sometimes have live in boyfrineds or grilfriends. unstable family context for child. {Since drinking can make people forget their problems and troubles temporarily, many children turn to alcohol under sch conditions. They think that at least when they are outside of their house, there are still people who can accompany them to drink and make them happy and stress-free.}
  • Children who face negative family support and parenting will feel neglected and start turning to rebellious acts to vent their frustration/anger of being neglected by their parents. They will start hanging out with the wrong company, join gangs which gives them a sense of belonging and for once, they are not neglected. They will also pick up bad habits like smoking and drinking in order to be apart of what their peers are doing. {Under Hirchi's control theory, strong social attachments encourage conformity. Hence, children who have weak relationships with their family members have more time to conduct deviant acts. For instance, most of my friends who do not have a good family background have a habit of drinking, smoking and clubbing.]
  • Parents who have high expectation towards their children give tons of pressure for their children such as forcing their children to study daily without giving any emotional support or understanding towards their children. This results the children to find alternative routes such as drug or alcohol to release their stress with peers who suffer similar conditions like them.
  • Positive family support and parenting is important because it allows one to open up to their family members. If one cannot open up to their family members about their problems, one will turn to other alternatives such as drugs and alcohol because they believe that the things will let them forget their problems even if it is just for awhile. They will feel neglected and feel like nobody loves them, hence leading to them trying to fill that emptiness
  • For many young people today, traditional patterns guiding the relationships and transitions between family, school and work are being challenged. Social relations that ensure a smooth process of socialization are collapsing; lifestyle trajectories are becoming more varied and less predictable. The restructuring of the labour market,the extension of the maturity gap (the period of dependence of young adults on the family) and, arguably, the more limited opportunities to become an independent adult are all changes influencing relationships with family and friends, educational opportunities and choices, labour market participation, leisure activities and lifestyles. It is not only developed countries that are facing this situation; in developing countries as well there are new pressures on young people undergoing the transition from childhood to independence. Rapid population growth, the unavailability of housing and support services, poverty, unemployment and underemployment among youth, the decline in the authority of local communities, overcrowding in poor urban areas, the disintegration of the family, and ineffective educational systems are some of the pressures young people must deal with.
  • Youth nowadays, regardless of gender, social origin or country of residence, are subject to individual risks but are also being presented with new individual opportunities—some beneficial and some potentially harmful. Quite often, advantages are being taken of illegal opportunities as young people commit various offences, become addicted to drugs, and use violence against their peers.
  • Statistical data indicate that in virtually all parts of the world, with the exception of the United States, rates of youth crime rose in the 1990s. In Western Europe, one of the few regions for which data are available, arrests of juvenile delinquents and under-age offenders increased by an average of around 50 percent between the mid-1980s and the late 1990s. The countries in transition have also witnessed a dramatic rise in delinquency rates; since 1995, juvenile crime levels in many countries in Eastern Europe and the Commonwealth of Independent States have increased by more than 30 percent. Many of the criminal offences are related to drug abuse and excessive alcohol use.
Existing Programmes Gaps & Their Causes Possible Solutions
Family Matters! programme
BeaconWorks Programme

BeaconWorks Programme is a voluntary 6-months programme for parents and children experiencing strained relationships who wish to solve their issues. It is also an alternative programme for parents to avoid filing a Beyond Parental Control Order against their child with the Children Care Court. (NYGR)


Youths-Hanging-Out-Late letters notifying parents, by the Singapore Police Force (NYGR). [If children are found loitering outdoors late at night or are engaging in dangerous activities, the Singapore Police Force will write letters to their parents so that they are aware of it. Youth-Hanging-out-Late strives and wants to help parents to educate and guide their children with the help of the Singapore Police Force and the Singapore authorities.] The limits faced by Youths-Hanging-Out-Late letters (NYGR) are that first of all, they are just letters to inform the parents of what their kids are doing outside and what happens after that is none of their concern. The letters sent out are just warnings to inform the parents of what their kids are doing outside, but it provides no other help method which would help curb the child’s behaviour, and it only leaves the job up to the parents, with minimal effort taken to help. Even though this method was meant for the welfare of the child, however, it was not well thought through as sending letters is only telling the parents of the child’s whereabouts, however this method ignores the fact that the parents has already lost control of their child, and therefore just helping them from the sides is not going to help with educating the child to get back onto the right track. Similarly, the challenges faced is that there may not be enough time and manpower to help the child before he/she gets into more serious trouble. There are quite a few number of teenagers in Singapore who are engaging in late night activities outside of their home, and therefore having to help all of them is significantly not possible as it’s not possible to help every single parent to educate their child, and if they do, it might take a long time for them tor each out to them, in which the case could have already been more serious than it originally is. “That was how a seven-year-old girl had her first drink. The mother was drinking wine and left it unfinished on the table, the girl just went up and took a sip," she said” also shows that even though the programme was set up to help the children, it is also limited in teaching the parent’s what are the dos and do nots and what to look out for so that their children’s condition would not get worse. This programme is thus limited in the fact that it only focuses on the children having problems, without considering that the parent may have also been a part of what the children have been on now. [We do not really know the fact whether the parents lost control of their child, it is jumping straight to the conclusion without having any evidence. Their child may just be celebrating birthday with their friends at the playground and having a stayover, this doesn't mean that the parent has lost control of their child.]

The program was initiated to prevent youth from becoming easy prey for trouble makers. [This program also helps to reduce the number deviant acts of rebellion and retreatism among the youths in Singapore. It is a norm for youths to be influenced by their friends to be deviant; be it in a good way or a bad way. As such youths that are involved or hang out with a bad company, they may be influenced or forced to do bad things, especially if they are loitering outdoors late at night. Some examples is that the youths may follow their friends to drink, gamble, smoke and other more illegal activities even though they are still young.] They might also enagage in crime or being recruited into gangs. It is common for youth to meet bad companies when hanging out late at night. Overtime, this result in them enagaging in crimes such as underage drinking as well as drugs abuse. Many a time, the company they met at night are older and of legal age to buy alchohol. It is easy for the youth to obtain alchohol and get influence in to trying them. Overtime, it can lead to addiction such as stated in the article titled "Social workers sound alert on young drinkers" by Danson Cheong dated 1st March 2015 at this link [4], Ben have not had a drink in two weeks, he could not afford alchohol and cannot control himself anymore so he went and stole a bottle of black current vokka. This resulted in him being caught. {When I was 16 years old, i was invited by my seniors to go over to their house playground to relax and have fun. When i reach there, i was given a pack of cigarettes and 1 can of Tiger beer. I did not know why they suddenly gave me all these things. I was confused and stunned and did not know what to do. Before i could react, i was pushed against the wall by one of the guys and was pressured by them to ask me to join their gang. I tried resisting and refuses their offer but nothing helps. The next moment, the police step in and question us what are we doing. The police scolded and chased us home and the next day i receive a letter from the police station saying about me hanging out doing suspicious activities. I was glad that i did not manage to join the gang and that i have learn a lesson that i should stay away from bad people.}
  • Therefore, the police force think there is a need to issue a letter to notify parent to keep their children indoor. Youth Hanging Out Late (YHOL) letters have been sent by the police since 2006 to the parents of youth found loitering in public areas or are exposed to “at risk” situations late at night. SPF also sends such letters to the youth’s school principals as well as the Commanding Officers of the Neighbourhood Police Centres (NPCs) where the youth’s educational institutions are located. [5]Setting a curfew for the youth is proposed. This idea of setting a curfew for youth is rather controversial and The proposal is met with different polarizing response. One such example as quoted from an article titled “Time to impose curfew on young” dated 19 November 2010 in the link [6], madam Jasmine Tan, a mother of two teenage boy find that setting a curfew for youth under age of 17 years old not a bad idea as they are still young and there is no reason for them to stay out so late. In addition to that, she thinks that it is a good way to prevent them from hanging out with bad companies. On the other hand, as quoted from the same article Child psychiatrist Dr Brian Yeo from Mount Elizabeth Medical Centre said that having a curfew is a good idea however in theory, it is difficult to enforce in reality. [However, an article/academic research paper titled "Be More Understanding of Teen's Late-Night Habit" by Vickineswarie Jagadharan (Ms) dated 24OCt 2017 at this link [7], says that teens are occupied late at night outdoor with studies and homework, reading, listening to music, chatting with friends, gaming or updating social media. Freedom is important to teens. They want personal space and time, as well as the ability to make their own choices. Hence, even if the police is issueing the letter, he/she should check with what the youngster are doing first. For example: if they are doing school projects, there is no reason for the police to issue a letter as they should be understanding and that it is for the good of the youth. If a parent receives a letter from the police, misunderstanding may occur as the parents may straight away think that their kids have done something wrong and a fight may occur.]
  • The challenges faced when making this programmes mandatory for parents to attend are firstly, the parents may not be interested to learn about helping their child solve their problems, and therefore this method is not helpful as they do not have the motivation to carry out what they had learnt into real life, thus possible wasting many people’s times. [Is it true that parents are not interested? Maybe they have work on hand or they have to take care of their baby? There can be many reasons] “Another challenge is that this intervention method would not suit everybody, so by targeting just parents, this method alone would not work. Different teenagers have different mindsets, while some may listen to their parents and stop for their sake, in which this intervention method could possibly work, but others have different methods, for example 1 to 1 counselling, where they feel more comfortable sharing to only 1 person for help, and others who would just listen to their friends. This intervention is a good method to help the child, but the limitation and challenges faced are that it may not be the best way for everyone, and using it no the wrong child may result in a waste of both parties time, including the parent’s time as well. Additionally, the parents not having control over their child would also make this programme pointless as shown through the article written by Danson Cheong of 'Social workers sound alert on young drinkers' [8] which shows that what the teenagers are afraid of are not their parents but instead, it’s the law as quoting from Danson Cheong that “Many of them only get help for their drinking habits when the law catches up to them for other offences.” This shows that even if parents had to go for such programmes, it would be pointless if they can’t carry it out, and thus showing the challenges of this intervention method.
Kidstart programme
  • Some of the diversionary program - parent is mandated to attend parental workshops. A lot depend on openness of parent. Ability to apply in real world context...other stresses, eg financial and employment. Kidstart program (MSf
KidSTART program
  • KidSTART is a program for children under the age of 6 years old that requires special needs and attention in various areas of their daily life. After doing a survey when admitted, both child and parent will be recommended for services that fit their unique needs. These services can either be given to the individual, family or group settings. In the following, I will be talking more about a KidSTART programme that I chanced upon on the internet that rehabilitate parents along with their troubled youths.
  • KidSTART Mental Health Clinic (operated by Rady Children’s Chadwick Center for Children & Families) and KidSTART Center (operated by Rady Children’s Developmental Services), are integrated to allow mental health and developmental specialists to assess their needs, helping them in the development of collaborative treatment plans, unique interventions and the long-term care coordination for both the affected child and family. All KidSTART programmes have a common goal which is to restore, sustain and enhance the health and developmental potential of children through excellence in care, education, research and advocacy.

Programmes to broach the subject

Existing Programmes Gaps & Their Causes Possible Solutions
Category A
Category B
Category C

AON 2: Helping Children from Dysfunctional Families

Existing Programmes Gaps & Their Causes Possible Solutions
Category A
Category B
Category C

AON 3: early intervention

Existing Programmes Gaps & Their Causes Possible Solutions
Category A
Category B
Category C

Pre-court diversionary program

  • These programs serve as a form of retribution and rehabilitation for the youth. Through these program, they will learn that it is not right to engage in the crime they are doing. This will also integrate them back in to the society by teaching them the right values. Hopefully, this program also serve as enough deterrence as if they were to commit a crime again (second offends), they will face court prosecution.
  • Some of the program offered are Guidance Program, Streetwise Program and Youth Enhanced Supervision (YES) Scheme. This program is currently oversee by the Probation Services Branch, Ministry of Social and Family Development (MSF). The youth will be guided by a social worker. This program will last for six month which includes individual, group-based and family sessions. The program aim to help the youth make the right choices and lead a crime-free lifestyle. This program is only available for first time offenders and they will just incur a warning after attending the program [9]
  • However, at the moment, this programs are not mandatory. This is a voluntary program for both the youth as well as the family. The program should be made mandatory as socialization of family members plays a huge role in the child’s behavior. Children spend a large amount of time with their parent and learn different things from them. It will be good if parent go through this program to learn how they should behave and how it affects their children. In addition to that, through this program, it allows family to bond with their children as they might feel that they are there for them. Having a bond with family members can help in the prevention of children committing crimes as they now have a purpose and is afraid of disappointing their family. Some parent also keeps labeling their children as a criminal after they commit a crime. This not only show to them that they are not being accepted and might result to them feeling alienated thus resulting in committing the same crime again. For example, as a drug abuser, if they were to be continuously refer to as a drug user, they will most probably do drugs again. Therefore, it is very important that the family learn how to react and handle their children through this program.
  • In conclusion, this program should be made mandatory as both youth and family should learn to handle these things together. No amount of effort would work if only either one party Is putting an effort to change. Ultimately, it might result in a relapse of past crimes.

Guidance program

  • is a six-month pre-Court diversionary programme that focusses on counselling and rehabilitation with the active involvement of parents. It seeks to help the youth develop prosocial mindsets and empathy for others.

Streetwise program

  • Streetwise Programme (SWP) is a voluntary early intervention programme for youths who are in gangs but are willing to leave the gangs. The programme helps such youths make a fresh start in life through a series of individual counselling, group work and family counselling sessions focussed on gang intervention and building the youths’ self-efficacy.
  • In 2007 to 2013, it shows a total of 121 youth between ages of 12 – 19 years old signing up for the street wise program. This shows how much it should be made mandatory for parent to attend this program with their child as well. They should be present at all counselling and sharing. This also shows the need for the police force to send Youth-Hanging-Out-Late letter to parent of children that were caught hanging out late as well as the need for curfew. [10]

Gaps and Their Causes

  • Those parents that turn up for parent training programmes are not those who need it most. Such programmes reach out to the converted, but you need to reach out to those who do not come. Need to draw in those who may not be keen, recruit with the mind that they will be committed to their child for a period of time.
  • Such families are picked up by FSCs, but unclear if the youths receive some support. Possibly lack of cooridnation or integrtaion with FSC and SCS an isisue.
  • Dual-income families, parents lack time to spend with children
  • Parents not equipped with the skills and resources to raise children well
  • Cyber risk - children are exposed to the internet at a young age, insufficiently equipped to discern online content
  • - Parents do not have full control of their children's behaviour. School and peers would have impact their children's way of thinking. What happens outside of their home can differ from home. E.g. peer pressure (theft).
  • - Parents with problems of their own that they can't solve, they will be less likely to focus on their children. These youths and their family situations (e.g. financial problem, gambling and vices) might cause children to rebel or commit the same doings.
  • Making sure that mentoring should be the pillars of youth work. Cannot say mentoring is optional, have to do this. Sociological theories say the impact of one caring adult is very important. Therefore, a certain proportion of our youths will need to avail themselves to such ‘surrogate parents’. If we can secure available and well trained caring concerned mentors as part of our ecosystem. Go for a few months, be there, be their friend. (check: CYGO did a pilot 5-6 years ago. Because MCYS split…so not sure where it is now).
  • Have counselling between parent and child and voice out the disagreements and what's bottling inside them to why they're doing deviant acts.
  • The answer is already certain the parents isn't giving enough love/ attention/ sense of belonging but in order for the parents to realise where they went wrong, they have to hear it from their children, not Simeone else to change.
  • With this, they'll understand the disagreements between one another, not just the parent but the child too.
  • Thus, making the bond stronger.
  • Additional information are at:

AON 4: Providing alternative goals

Existing Programmes Gaps & Their Causes Possible Solutions
Category A
Category B
Category C

To insert above, anecdotes to move to discussion page

Discussion on what counts as positive parenting (to insert to desired outcomes, the rest to discussion page]

Existing Resources and Challenges

  • [a study to show that most youths in hostels have troubled families...parenting tends to be root of a child's problems...need to rehabilitate parents as well as youth]

Possible Solutions

Youth Education and School Drop Outs

  • Desired Outcome: Need to discover and achieve their aspirations [complete or thrive?][Whatever path they take, they need to feel proud of it, positive in life]
  • Synopsis: [To insert]
  • Statistics: [To insert]
Existing Programmes Gaps & Their Causes Possible Solutions
Category A
Category B
Category C
  • Defined by schools, largely in terms of 1) poor attendance, 2) poor academic performance and 3) having to see school counselors [Citation needed]
  • NEETs & Drop-outs
  • See page [Create separate page?]
  • MOE has 10 year drop out rates, less than 1%. We take 10 years of education, not 12 years like other countries. If look at post-secondary, the drop-out rates are higher (need to verify, may be as high as 20%).
  • Youth workers have said keeping troubled youth engaged in school remains a worrying issue because of social problems such as broken families and Internet addiction.(Today 17 Feb 2015)
  • MOE statistics show that less than 1 per cent of each Primary One cohort in the last five years has failed to complete secondary school. -ITE does not share drop-out rates. But can make estimate.
  • -Anecdotal: At very minimum must complete their school. Bonus if they do well. The longer they stay in school, the better. More sheltered environment than if they go out to work. then less likely to progress up in career. in other countries, less of a paper chase (SCS).
  • - Education helps keep a child occupied and less likely to be involved in such vices (drugs and alcohol). It educates them as well us teach them the 'norms', 'what good conduct is' and the right behaviour.

Existing Resources

  • MSF's Enhanced STEP-UP [11] [Will this be scaled down after ISP?]
  • MOE's School Social Work - known as student welfare officers, they will help facilitate the use of community resources to provide holistic support for students and their families. Example, in certain cases, such as marital discord, the complex and difficult family circumstances of some students go beyond what the form teachers and school counsellor can typically advise or handle. As a representative from the school, student welfare officers sometimes find that the students’ families are more responsive and cooperative as we work together on the common goal to maximise the child’s potential(Today 17 Feb 2015)
  • -NCSS doing something also (to check)
  • Students Care Service Scholarships and Bursaries

Gaps and Their Causes

  • If intervention only comes in at the Enhances Step-up pahse, the success will not be very high. more early intevrnetion or developmental work. Not easy for agencies after referral, the youth already not going to school...really tough work.
  • On School Social Work - students may be more comfortable sharing their feelings with youth workers who are not part of the school (Palvindran Jayram, an acting team leader with the Lutheran Community Care Services) (Today 17 Feb 2015)
  • In 2012, a National Institute of Education study involving 3,000 youth revealed that youth gamers spent about 20 hours a week on gaming and about 10 per cent of them displayed symptoms of obsessive video gaming.(Today 17 Feb 2015)
  • -Anecdotal, SCS: ITE students don't stay in school because they are working part time, they have financial needs, may be form single parent families. they work to earn the pocket money that they need. Some find ITE work tough. Higher NITEC more theoretical, so harder to cope. even if have tuition, wont be able to afford it. Also get into a course they may not like, even ITE has grades requirements. Dumping ground is facilities management, or megatronics. F&B are popular. kids enjoy hands on. Girls like beauty and hair, but hard to get in. Accounting and nursing not easy to get in, more financial support for nursing. Check educational stats digest by MOE.
  • Enhanced step up and school social work also just part of the parcel. focus is on youth. but need focus on family. check literature on school drop outs. in US, predictors could be like retain many times. or parental education, SES etc. so these are very hard for VWO to intervene, how to intervene if parents low income and don't value education.
  • "When they intervene, it is mainly psycho-social because they cannot intervene in the structure" while psycho-social factors is one thing, low self esteem, low motivation. But if you look at the Maslow hierarchy, if basic needs are not met, can't intervene at one level up. (SCS: Liz)
  • -Schools are better at building teacher – student relationship. MOE recognises this, besides the desired outcome of education, also start to cater to socio-emotional needs: enhanced career officer, school counsellors…etc but fall short of wrap around school-student-family support. Cannot go full swing because MSF will never set up satellite FSCs in school. These FTSCs and school social workers are doing it alone. VWOs have advantage of doing it with the full support of an organisation. (CARE).

Possible Solutions

  • Pay the parents to send the kids to school. Some developing country tried this.
  • Community warp around the school: -Unless community adopt the school. Search Institute (Minneapolis)-health communities, healthy schools. Developmental Assets. Community wrap around the school. 'Holographic fidelity': My whole community knows that we are youth-centric and youth friendly. Protective factor-if youth no behaving well, they take it upon themselves. “The community gets the youth it deserves.”
  • - Conduct a compulsory counselling session for children at least once every 6 months. To keep check on youths situations, their mental health, problems in order to prevent bad conduct.

Youth Mental Health

Youth Substance Abuse

Youth Offending / Juvenile Delinquency

Peer Influence / Social and Moral Identity

  • Desired Outcome: Develop a sense of positive identity, social and moral development?
  • Synopsis: [To insert]
  • Statistics: [To insert]
Existing Programmes Gaps & Their Causes Possible Solutions
Category A
Category B
Category C
Category A Programmes
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Category B Programmes
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Category C Programmes
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To insert to above

Subjective Concerns about Youth Morals and how it would lead to Deviant actvities

  • Youth Morals Firstly, generally youth morals come from their environment. Youth are affected through ‘Walk The Talk’. For example, children who are exposed to alcohol at a young age would most likely become alcoholics. ( Secondly, every primary and secondary school student in SG goes through moral education. However, not all youths turn out to have the ‘right’ morals. Youth still have various opposing stands that they believe in. The number of youths being administered into the MSF Youth Residential Homes are decreasing, from 322 in 2014 to 302 in 2015. (file:///C:/Users/17025403/Downloads/Brief%20Social%20Stats%202016.pdf) This shows that more youths morals are becoming acceptable in society. Less youths are causing trouble. Also, an increasing number of youths today are becoming more open minded. Some might feel that this is a good phenomenon as youth become more ‘cultural relativism’. However, some might feel that youths are becoming too open. (increase in LGBT trends across the world)
  • Youth Morals and Act of Deviance The environment where the youth is brought up is really important. When youths are brought up with people who seems to be happy when doing things like alcohol and drugs, the youths would then think “If it makes everyone happy, then it must be right.”. This would then lead the youths to doing deviant activities as for them, it seems normal to do it for them.
  • As the youths today are getting more open minded on the things happening in the world such as LGBT and feminism etc. The number of negative deviant acts toward this issue has decreased as youths are starting to accept it. Instead, more positive deviant acts are done such as having more organisations that supports those issues and having events held to show some love for the people.
  • In Europe, the population is aging and is affecting the structure of the function of the society. This has a considerable impact on the staffs of institutions responsible for prevention and control of youth deviance and violence. In this recent years, police-record crime rates in many European countries, for youths and juvenile violence has been rising. Existing approaches to prevent and control youth deviance and violence: They have local studies to help them analyse local and regional conditions of you deviance and violence and how to prevent and control it. They do school surveys as a way to gage and get information on the conditions and further background factors of deviance and violence. (Usually asking about family, friends, use of drugs, lifestyle etc). Local interviews also used as a study to provide more perspective, direct from the youth, about the problems in juvenile deviance and how to reduce the crime and violence. Interviews also address the multiple-professional and multi-agency samples. (e.g. Police, juvenile social workers etc). This interviews are more focused on what prevention tactic is working or not working. And in the near future, a new expert perspective will be applied to the prevention and control of the deviance and violence of youth. They will conduct a two-wave national Delphi survey and a third multinational round anticipated demographic and social changes of the decade to come were taken into account. The main focus of the international Delphi round on future challenges will change perspectives for the exchange of good practice between European countries.
  • Examples in Singapore - Youths in Singapore are shunning away from religion. Today, most are doing so to uphold credibility as a moral voice. One example,having been believing in Buddhism and Christianity for most of her life, Hannah Kok 23, no longer believes in divinity. As a believer of none, she transformed into an atheist. Stating that she feels all forms of God exists. Such a deviant trend, amongst youths changes their modern perspectives. As the youths become increasingly liberal, less conservative, more are prone to slant towards scientific thinking or rational logic than reliance on pure faith. Some are daring even to speak up on taboo topics which are not discussed as openly in the past like on religion or sex. Being a non-believer, can thus turn someone into a deviant as they shy away from traditional morals or beliefs which no longer constraints one. Where by religion loses its original functional objective that could serve as a moral compass to guiding them on their thoughts or actions.
  • (
  • Comparing local Singaporean youths to their overseas Southeast Asian counterparts. While religion may be one factor that affect youths today, so does their creativity and willingness in expressiveness towards political views through street art. Malaysia youth activist, Fahmi Reza, created his street artworks on PM Najib such that it had caused a large ripple effect to the political environment. He was bold and not fearful of any sedition charges that was receiving global attention from the media. Thus shows a similar trend which in social deviance is brought about where by youths today are becoming more liberal and less consequential in their schools of thought that may affect a society politically or socially or economically. Therefore show that southeast asia youth culture is permeating towards supporting a sense of freedom in thought, freedom of expression, or freedom of belief in religion or politics.
  • (
  • - People especially youths do not clean up after themselves/ littering
  • Complacency is the likely reason for Singapore's litter woes. The youths today have a mindset that “there is always someone, somewhere, to pick up after them”, and hence they care less when littering. They always think there is someone picking up after them such as the Cleaners, Road Sweepers etc.
  • Although Youth’s nowadays also have the same perception about littering such that everyone knows flicking a cigarette butt onto the floor or throwing a used tissue of the window is littering. However, the youths still litter out of convenience and they don’t care because they don’t get caught.Which is also apparent when many more youths in Singapore pick up smoking and there will be additional litter such as cigarette buds. This is weird because in singapore, there are almost bins everywhere in every corner. This is hence a huge question towards youth’s beliefs and how it led to deviance such as littering.
  • (
  • Expert Perspectives There are psychologists who look into youth violence observe that their actions are very impulsive, spur-of-the-moment types that are caused by alcohol or peer pressure. The intensity of the actions are differentiated by the gender of the youths. For example, a clinical psychologist Carol Balhetchet says boys express themselves more through hitting people, allowing them to "activate their frustrations", while girls on the other hand are more likely to engage in a more emotional form of violence. They might go online, start rumours about each other, which eventually targets emotions and causes disputes.
  • Dr Balhetchet also says that these youths pick up such violent habits from their domestic household. He mentions that “If they experienced violence when they were younger and don't voice it out, it becomes like a balloon that one day will pop when it gets too much." Thus, supporting the fact that these kids become traumatised so much so that they want to vent their frustration to others, and because they think it is normal to inflict harm on others since they grew up in an abusive environment. But there are many treatment centres, homes and organisations catered to these teens. Some of them would be: AG home, AWARE singapore, etc.

There are different ways where youths can be engaged in social and moral development. [meaningfully engaged different from social and moral development...might be two separate need statements; should we include 'moral' in the statement] [possible specify and clarify the areas within this need, eg need to be connected to prosocial peer groups]

Some Facts and Observations about Impact of Peer Influence and Neglected Youth/Children

Peer influence is when you choose to do something you wouldn’t otherwise do, because you want to feel accepted and valued by your friends. It isn’t just or always about doing something against your will.

Negative peer influences may result in the following conditions:

- Academics may be affected. In peer groups, it is important that one is accepted into their peer group.This means that their peer group’s approval gets placed above that of their parents and teachers. This in turn has a direct effect on their academics. Sometimes their academics are affected because despite being capable of performing well, they choose not to because in the eyes of their peers it makes them look ‘uncool’. Sometimes their academics are affected because in an effort to fit in with their peer group, they place more emphasis on being social rather than working on their academics. Hanging out outside with one's peer group may affect academics as playing outside with friends means one will neglect his/her studies and have not enough time for it [Adapted from]

- Adopt dangerous habits and defiant act just to 'fit in' and be accepted in a particular circle of friends. Negative peer influence will pressure one to adopt bad habits like smoking, consuming alcohol especially below the legal age. It may also lead to joining gangs and also adopting the habit of abusing drugs. Despite knowing that these habits are bad, they choose to adopt as it signifies as an acceptance in the peer group they are in.[Adapted from]

- One's individuality may be loss. Negative peer pressure will cause one to follow whatever their peers do, against their own will, as one will think that whatever they do is right. Thus, loss the sense of knowing what is right and wrong. This will then lead to the bandwagon fallacy. [Adapted from ]

- Defying parents and distancing oneself from the family. Negative peer influence will pressure one to pick up bad habits and attitudes. Aside from the ones mentioned above, such as smoking, negative peer influence will cause one to spend more time with their peers, so as to feel more accepted and welcomed in the circle of friends. When this happens, it will cause one to defy their parents and going out later than the curfew given. [Adapted from ]

- Throwing away ones morals. For example, sex. Some teenagers decide to have sexual relationships because their friends think sex is cool. Others feel pressured by the person they are dating. Still others find it easier to give in and have sex than to try to explain why not. It is common in today's society to view sex as something very normal as 'everyone is doing it', which leads to peers influencing others to try it if not they will feel like they are 'losing out'. [Adapted from]

- Increase the rate of teens committing to crime. Negative peer influence might cost one to not act in their own accord and to take part of illegal/ unhealthy act such as shoplifting, consumption of drugs, smoking etc. All of this acts were committed just because teens do not wanted to be left out just because they reject to their peer's request. [ Adapted from ]

Subjective Nature of Youth "Morals" -Need to focus on emerging issues: sexual grooming, virtual marriages and sexting; is too much cosplay or virtual reality a concern? [How can youth workers keep updated on these trends, which are changing very fast?]

Existing Resources and Challenges

Youth’s Intervention for social and moral development Youth’s intervention such as Student Cares Centre and MSF’s Youth Goals have similar objective of not only provide care and supervision but meaningfully engaged either in their studies or work, stay crime-free and help them development in various dimensions – physical, intellectual, emotional, social and moral development, as well as a place to rest after school hours.


Students Care Centres (SCCs) that are licensed and regulated by MSF, for school-going children aged 7-14 (primary 1 to secondary 2). Every primary school will have one SCC to look after latchkey students with subsidies, means-tested. SCCs provide a conducive environment for the children’s holistic development in various dimensions – physical, intellectual, emotional, social and moral development, as well as a place to rest after school hours. They are open on 7.30am or earlier to 6.30pm or later on the weekdays and 7.30am or earlier to 1.30pm or later on Saturday. The purpose of these SCCs provides a way for caring for students who have parents working late and also to provide care that the parents or school cannot give due to their busy schedule such as their homework and organizing activities for the students. They intend to help by allowing students to have someone to depend on when it comes to their academics and well-being and prevent them from negative influences. [Adapted from]

MSF's Youth GO! Programme (YGP) - a youth outreach programme which is modelled after well-established street outreach services overseas such as Hong Kong's. Care Corner appointed for the North East and Fei Yue for the North West and South West districts respectively. The key objectives are to support at-risk youth, aged 12 to 21, so that they will be meaningfully engaged either in their studies or work, stay crime-free and able to solve problems and be resilient individuals..[12]

Gaps and Their Causes- how to reach out to youths better

Youth workers do not do very much at the drop in centres. kids who like to do homework. Should run it, becuase where else will they go? So if they hav CCAs, they dont need to come. The kids that nobody wants. Or the kids who end up in CCAs that they dont like. CCAs have entry requirments. eg auditions, sports. uniform groups are dumping ground, or AV club will absorb. community service clubs, different shcools have different niche. Drop in centres design based on needs of youths? Structured programme, eg monday is football, tuesday is...based on interest of the workers, eg if they like baking. In the holidays, the drop in centres, there are more activities.

AFTER SCHOOL ENGAGEMENT -teachers do it just like another academic programme…therefore need for youth engagement and specialists who know how to do this; when teachers run it, ends up to be ‘homework supervision’. -instead, good activities could be: engagement centres, interest space, service learning.

LEADERSHIP OPPORTUNITIES Leadership opportunities should be open to youth at risk as well, and not just the creme de la creme. 'Premium products' need not be limited for only elite youth. Certain youth at risk have the potential to be leaders, and such leadership programmes should be open to them, but tweaked to accommodate the support they require given difficult personal circumstance because the factors that placed them at risk may still be present. If you do not groom them, the youth at risk with leadership potential, then the gangs will take them. Not good enough that they don’t get into a life of crime. More can be done (Care). If the youths at risk were not even given an equal opportunity to help nurture and grow their potential, they may continue down the wrong path. Giving them the chance to show their inner potential is in a way also in a way giving them the support they need when they are struggling with their own personal problems in their lives. It shows that the people around them still care about them and if they change, they can still succeed and do well in life.

FAMILY ENGAGEMENT They can be more involved in the youth's life, making the effort to keep up with what they are doing and also listen to problems they have in their lives without scolding them before hearing them out. Make an effort to create a day (eg: sunday) where everyone goes out and spend quality time together, this is to let these youth at risk know that family is always there for them, reducing the chance of them being deviant.

Limits and Challenges of Interventions Challenges of the Student Care Centres would be there would be a lack of communication between the parents and the child. Since they are busy in their schedules, they may not be able to participate in the Centre’s programmes that are organised for them and hence it may affect their relationship for some parents who are too busy to care about their children’s social and school life.Hence, SCCs have implemented programmes that involves their parents to communicate with them regularly and build a mutual understanding for their students as seen in the guidelines from the Ministry of Social and Family Development website. [13]

Challenges of Youth Go! Programme would be that some youths may have negative ideas regarding service-learning that may result from community service being mandatory or negative past experience with community service, they are less likely to engage in adequate service and in self-reflection and learning associated with community service. [14]

Comparison between both interventions Youth Go! Programme focuses more on the youth, to keep them meaningfully engaged in their work or studies, stay crime-free, be able to solve problems and also be resilient individuals. Student Care Centre’s program would be to help the parents communicate better with the youth and build a mutual understanding with each other. However, Youth Go! Programme focuses more on having youths teaching other youths values and morals as compared to Student Care Centres as the Student Care Centres mainly watch over the youths while they are there rather than teaching them values and morals. [15]

Conclusion To conclude, both Youth Go! Programme and the Student Care Centres focuses on helping youths stay crime-free and also to keep them engaged in their studies or work. Student Care Centre’s programs focuses more on getting the parents to interact with the youths more, while Youth Go! Programme focuses more on getting the youths together and interact. Both have their advantages and disadvantages, but both interventions are there to help youths stay crime-free.

Possible Solutions 1) Different ways where youths can be engaged in social development Parents taking initiative to support. This will allow them to be more open with their parents and they will be more likely to seek help from their parents instead of friends especially the ones that might not be the best influences.

2) Mixing around with people who are good influences;not deviant or engaged in deviant activities. This is because sometimes, youths are more likely to receive feedback/support from their friends rather than family members and therefore a good friend support circle is important in engaging in social development. Youths can take part in Curriculum Activities. This is because, while joining a CCA, not only do they learn a new skill, they will meet a new set of friends too. Therefore, if they find out what they did wrong to their classmates, they would remember ad not do the same thing with their CCA mates.

3) Teachers or members of the school committee play a part as well. A strong support system in school is as important as a strong family support system as youths spend half of their day (or more) in school and if the support/care is not there, there is a high chance that they might become deviant.]

4) Connecting to Others in Need - Kids/ Youth who develop a passion to serve can usually point to a critical experience that became transformative for them. Like Eden Eskaros, the experience frequently involves face-to-face interaction with people who are different from them, and most often, with people who are in need. 5)Shifting Their Perspectives - Through reflection, talking with others, and linking their values to the issues that impact them, young people experience a shift in perspective. They begin to see how issues are connected to each other, and they become interested in understanding the root causes of societal problems.[16]

Youth would tend to be deviant when they get restricted to do things that they want. For instance, when a parent expects their child to go home right away after school instead of hanging out with their group of friends. The child would find a way to come up with excuses just so he/she could join the friends to hang out. At the same time, parents would have to consider that it could be due to the different generations. Besides, youths these days are way too exposed with the environment, I would second that. To youths, things that are considered 'wrong' to their parents would be seen as 'decently right' nowadays, taking the LGBT as an example. Simply put, the act(s) of deviance happens out of curiosity.

6) Having a study group session - In this way, youths can gather together during their free time to study. They can help one another if there are areas they need to clarify. They also could motivate each other to study so they would not get distracted by other things, it would motivate them to continue going to school and not having the idea of dropping out of school.

7) Youths could also get a part-time job. It would expand their social life and broaden their perspective in life. They can have better time management; could also learn new knowledge and skills in their workplace. It would prepare them for their full time jobs in the future.

8)Getting youths to believe in religion. When they start to believe in a certain religion, some things would become clear to them that it is not right to do it and will discourage their unacceptable behavior in society and become a better person.

Work and Employment pathways post-education

  • Desired Outcome: [To insert]
  • Synopsis: [To insert]
  • Statistics: [To insert]
Existing Programmes Gaps & Their Causes Possible Solutions
Category A
Category B
Category C
Category A Programmes
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Category B Programmes
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Category C Programmes
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Hatch, a social enterprise founded by a National University of Singapore (NUS) undergraduate, these youths are getting jobs in digital marketing and user experience (UX) and user interface (UI) design (see TODAY 15 July 2019)

Capability of Service System

  • Desired Outcome: [To insert]
  • Synopsis: [To insert]
  • Statistics: [To insert]
Existing Programmes Gaps & Their Causes Possible Solutions
Capability of Youth Workers
Information on Youth
Category C
Youth Workers
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Information on Youth
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To integrate to above: Need for youth workers to be adequately equipped to engage youths

[ADD CAPABILITY BUILDING NEED: need funding and resources for upstream work for VWOs]

Existing Resources

Development framework for Youth Workers (DYW) by CYGO

Social Media Resource Kit by CYGO

Students Care Service training & consultancy; guides -most are supervision services, for agencies who dont have enough supervision. for clinical social work supervision. if have crisis or suicide case, what protocol. the places that buy supervisioon are those that work with youth.

SSI has lots of training for youth workers

Youth workers skills need to change as youth's needs are changing. but skills not particularly lakcing, eg outreach...lacking resources but not skills. being updated with youth trends. be ahead of what youth are interested in. if just go down to schools to engage youths, developemntal or preventive programs dont need, but have social workers have oversight for higher risk cases or remedial cases.

only VWOs have access to schools, not informal groups eg church.

Gaps and Their Causes

-Peace's study: whether there is enough supervision for social workers for youth. lack of quality supervision for social worker may lead to retention issues.

-a lot of learning on the job, from peers, and learning from the youths...hearing from the youths themselves, on how they would like to be engaged.

-useful to understand the developmental stages of youth, eg psychological background. Others may not have that knowledge but enagge with them well.

-Not enough Malay Muslim Organisations engaged in youth work? Mendaki works with youths only through agencies and partners; AMP also move out of it. Maybe because too difficult, very hard work. For CARE, 40-45% clientele are Malay Muslims, therefore CARE has made a conscious decision to employ Malay Muslim youth workers, and Malaysians who are trilingual.

Possible Solutions

-sharing program, get youths to give intel on how to engage youth.

To integrate to above: Need for holistic information on youth at risk

Existing Resources

Youth information System (YIS) shares information on Singapore's youth-at-risk among MOE, MHA and MSF (YIS.)

Gaps and Their Causes

ESU meets ESU, YARE meets YARE...but not all agencies run these programs. CYGO only gather for specific purposes, eg metoring initiatve.

Resource gap: E.g. Boystown staff drive a van to pick up delinquents who stay out late. but no everyone can do that. they go to hotpots for youth and pick them up. resources to reach out to the streets are lacking...but the instituinalised resources. ESU B is outreach, so hard to do. outreach work for higher risk youth hard to do, not low risk ones, easy to do.

Home visits, knocking on doors for hard to reach youths. with no clear sense of success. hard to convince people to pay for it.

as they long as they stay in school, easy to find the, if drop out, hard to find them. But need to engage them in school. a lot of programmes focus on bonding with classmates and peers. friendship and peer culture, fit in.

Possible Solutions

Resource Directory

SMU 2019 study: "Results revealed misalignment between the social service programmes and youths' articulated needs. The findings point towards the importance of considering the specific role of the psychological need for autonomy and relatedness in bridging the gap between service provision and client expectations."

Landscape of Youth At Risk Services See CYGO Slide no. 10 for Landscape of Services

About 10 key organisations here will take over the state's existing programmes to guide and rehabilitate young people under 21 who get into trouble. main youth programmes to be centralised through these organisations - called Integrated Service Providers (ISPs) hopefully making the quality consistent. The three programmes the ISPs will run are "Guidance", "Enhanced Step-Up", and "Triage". They are currently run by charities and youth organisations that target teens who have committed petty offences for the first time, those who have dropped out of school and young offenders. (ST 14 Nov 2016)

ISP Programmes ST 16 Nov 2016 • The Triage which stations social workers at police division headquarters to assess the risks and needs of youth offenders. Social workers located at police stations to decide if need GPs.

• The Guidance Programme to divert first-time offenders who have committed minor offences from the court system and towards counselling and rehabilitation.

• The Enhanced Step-Up programme which works with those likely to drop out of school.


National Committee on Youth Guidance and Rehabilitation


Chairman - Senior Minister of State for Home Affairs and National Development Desmond Lee (ST 4 Nov 2015)

Whole-of-Government committee on youth delinquency and crime. It has representation from agencies with a stake in reducing youth delinquency: Education, community and social services, health, police, prisons, Central Narcotics Branch, National Youth Council, Attorney-General, the Courts. There are also representatives also from the academia and ethnic self-help groups. Set up in 1995 to coordinate efforts between government agencies, the courts and community groups to reduce juvenile delinquency.

Central Youth Guidance Office


Executive arm and Secretariat of the National Committee on Youth Guidance and Rehabilitation (NYGR). Sets policies and strategies across the entire (youth) offending spectrum.

Youth GO! Programme [17] by MSF

National Youth Council

NCSS Children and Youth Team

VWOs with Youth Programmes

Lakeside FSC

-strong children and youth programme, youth wing -ACE football -repurtation for youth work


youth work

Fei Yue

Beyond Social Services

ADD Malay agencies

check self help groups, jamiyah home

Specialist Youth Agencies

Beautiful People

Beautiful People began as a mentorship programme for at-risk teenage girls under Beyond Social Services, an organisation that works with disadvantaged youth. now supports 100 girls and women each year through their programmes, up from around 10 a year when it first started in 2006.founder, Ms Melissa Kwee Free for Good, a programme that helps female inmates reintegrate into society upon their release. Heroes' Journey, a mentorship programme for teenage boys, its first for males. Mentorship programmes for teenagers run officially for a year at Beautiful People's partner homes such as Gracehaven and Pertapis Centre for Women and Girls. ST 26 May 2016 [18]

Boys' Town

Executive Director - Irene Loi

"Boys' Town will not be tendering to be an ISP, as it prefers to retain its niche of reaching out to young people in the streets."We prefer to focus on what we have been doing all along," (Irene Loi, in ST 14 Nov 2016)


Care Corner


Crossroad youth centre and teck ghee youth centre

Children-At-Risk Empowerment (Care) Association

Executive Director - Dr John Tan

Schools Social Work, Counselling & Case Work, Outreach & Youth Mentoring, Sports Partnership, Parents & Teacher Training


Reach Youth (Reach Youth site) by Reach Community Services Society (Reach corporate site)

Life coaching, counseling, sports, tuition, bursary.

Singapore Children's Society

Students Care Service

Integrated Service Provider

School based social work, centre-based and community-based services.

For Primary & Secondary Schools: -School Social Work for Youth & Children (SYNC) -The Scaffold Programme (TSP) -Youth Community on Patrol (COP) -After School Engagement Programmes (ASE) -Enhanced Step-Up -Training & Consultation for Teachers & Parents

For ITE Colleges: -Strengths & Spurs -Buddy ‘IN (for ITE Colleges & Special Education Schools)

3 Centres: Clementi, Hougang & Yishun. Educational Psychology Assessment Training & Research arm are in Tiong Bahru.

-NT & NA - academically under-performing -Guidance Program - diversionary program, 6 months. if not breach them, then they go to court. MSF protocol. first time offenders. -school identify them as low attendance rate, behavioral problems. go counselling or engage to run group work sessions. (usually for NT & NA) -Youth COP has mixed needs, modelling. cannot run a program that is all high risk. also run problem of puttin bad eggs together. -Drop-in centres: Clementi & Hougang, or in school. social worker there. community youths - from neighborhood schools. no positive activities to engage in after school. -true football. -those in school who have higher count of detention, versus just nothing to do. -Students Care Service also runs educational psychology program for youths, use pre-post test. mainly for learning difficulties. sometimes anxiety-related disorders, e.g. selective mutism, where psychologist will do intervention.


TOUCH Youth is a division of Touch Community Services

Trybe | Facebook (@TrybeSingapore) | Instagram (@TrybeSg) | LinkedIn (@TrybeLimited).

Trybe aims to journey with youth facing adversities to lead purposeful lives and inspire them to impact others. It provides youth with guidance and offer support for their families and communities by engaging them in services spanning across intervention, rehabilitation and reintegration work.

Specific programmes include:

  • Chrysalis is an intervention and prevention programme which targets youths presenting at-risk behaviours or symptoms/diagnosis of mental health conditions. It aims to steer them away from crime, enhance their resilience and coping skills, improve their family relationships and help them stay in school through mentoring, casework, group-based activities and family engagement. 
  • Growing Resilient Youth in Transition (GRYT) aims to combat recidivism by supporting youth transiting from institution-based probation or rehabilitation towards integration back into the community and away from an offending lifestyle.
  • Overcoming Addictions Securing Youths’ Successes (OASYS) consists of outreach and engagement, case management and treatment services for youth who have been exposed to or struggle with drug-related issues.

Trybe also manages the Singapore Boys' Hostel (SBHL), and the Community Rehabilitation Centre, a community-based residential programme for first time young drug abusers.

Youth Guidance Outreach Service (YGOS)


Joint youth outreach project by Boy's Town and Catholic Welfare Services

Children and Young Persons Homes

There are 21 Children and Young Persons Homes providing residential care programmes for those from dysfunctional families and in need of shelter; abused or neglected; in need of care and protection; beyond parental control; and in conflict with the Law. ([19] MSF website)

Professional Associations

Youth Work Association (Singapore)

youth workers are about 300-400 [WDA study on youth workers]

Check 2005-2006 NYC and NCSS competency framework...for youth workers and volunteers

Association of Psychotherapists and Counsellors (Singapore)

Commonwealth Alliance of Youth Work Associations (CAYWA)

-code of ethics for youth work