Stepping Up

Living Free Project

Funded by Victorian Legal Services Board Grants Program, Ian Potter Foundation and Gandel Philanthropy, the Living Free Project is a targeted integrated response to vulnerable young females aged 10-17 years who have been reported missing and women 18-30 years in contact with the justice system. Through a multi-component model, the project provides service delivery via assertive outreach and supported care co-ordination that is strengthened by project co-ordination that focuses on referral pathways, capacity building and systemic advocacy. With the overall objective to address the dynamic risk factors presenting for vulnerable girls and women, the project works to break the trajectory that often sees them entrenched in the justice system as adults.

Through the development of priority referral pathways across multiple sectors and enhancing the understanding across these area of the needs of these girls and women, the project works across the Frankston Mornington Peninsula to responses. Capacity building across key services (e,g, child and family services, maternal child health) that have contact with vulnerable young females is also undertaken, providing education around needs of females at risk of justice involvement and navigating local agencies to address these needs in order to address the drivers for their involvement in the justice system.

Systems advocacy strengthens the direct project delivery aspect to create sustainable change via advocacy, capacity building and the exploration and documentation systemic gaps that contribute to women’s contact with the justice system.

This multi-component project provides a unique response to at risk females in order to reduce the likelihood of further contact with the justice system from both an individual level and systems level and is delivered via a partnership approach.

For referral and enquiries regarding program delivery please contact Megan Conway, Stepping-Up Consortium, at mconway@stepping-up.org.au or on 0407 548 805

For more information regarding the program, check out our podcast ‘Rewriting the Narrative’ – https://radiopublic.com/rewriting-the-narrative-women-in-8jyXvz

For project co-ordination, capacity building and systems based enquiries contact Lisa Abbott, Frankston Mornington Peninsula Primary Care Partnership, at labbott@phcn.vic.gov.au or on 0410 407 034

Please see our Resources page to view the project evaluation report.