Youth Support Officer a favourite amongst teens at PCYC Mackay

Starting as a Bike Education Instructor several years ago and recently moving into the role of Youth Support Officer, Kim Presland is a favourite amongst teens at PCYC Mackay.

“I moved to the Youth Support Officer role during COVID-19. I love supporting young people and seeing them achieve their goals, and just helping to get them on the right track to a happy and healthy life,” said Kim.

“Working at PCYC Mackay is wonderful. I feel like we make a big difference in the community helping people of all ages to connect, and we give young people a safe place to come if they need any support,” she said.

“In my initial role as a Bike Education Instructor I loved helping young people to stay safe on our roads. It was lovely watching children who were unable to previously ride a bike, gain that skill in two days, and to watch their whole school class celebrate along with the teachers.”

“Now working in Youth Support, I am able to make a difference and hear our young people’s stories. I work with them over time to help them reach their goals and improve their lives, even if it is just a little bit.”

PCYC Mackay Club Manager Sergeant Kelsie Henderson agrees that Kim is doing some amazing youth work at the club.

“Kim started as a Youth Support Officer in 2020 during a time when very limited services were successfully reaching young people in need. She took on that challenge, and she knew there would be some steep learning curves ahead,” said Sergeant Henderson.

“As the PCYC Mackay Club Manager for 11 years I have seen many youth workers come and go. In my opinion, none have had Kim’s ability to genuinely connect with young people and make a difference in their lives,” she said.

“One particular example is when a young girl came into the club asking for Kim. She presented with a range of mental and physical health issues, but the reason she came to the club instead of a hospital or health service was because the kids at school told her – if you need help, Kim at PCYC Mackay will help you.”

“Receiving this endorsement from young people – often the hardest group to win over – is testament to Kim’s exceptional abilities and the trust young people have in her.”

Kim not only develops programs and mentors young people, she also assists other organisations to ensure a holistic approach. Kim was recently instrumental in encouraging the Mackay Regional Council to officially provide breakfast clubs and local high schools, which now supports more than 2,500 high school students weekly.

“I am so excited to see our club’s new programs take shape, and the outcomes that can be achieved to give young people an opportunity to find their place and to be confident and happy going forward,” said Kim.

“I love that PCYC Queensland offers so many wonderful programs that engage all age groups, and I also love that young people in our area know to come to PCYC for help if they need support or just a safe place to hang out.”

For more information on PCYC Mackay’s programs and activities, call 07 4942 3296 or keep up to date via the PCYC Mackay Facebook page.