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About Merri-bek Youth

The video above was filmed at the Sydney Road Street Party in 2019 and shows performances on the Oxygen Stage, and shows the Merri-bek Youth team in action.

About Merri-bek Youth

Merri-bek Youth is a free service for young people aged between 12 and 24 years. Our purpose is to work alongside young people, their families, schools and other youth service providers in Merri-bek to create opportunities that empower young people. Merri-bek Youth welcomes all young people from diverse backgrounds and lived experiences.

  • Call us on 1800 My Youth (1800 699 688) on Monday to Friday, from 9am and 5pm.

    Email us at

    Visit us Oxygen Youth Space at 4-8 Gaffney Street, Coburg North 3056. You can find out about Drop-In at Oxygen and the great things at this venue on our Oxygen Youth Space page.

    You can also message us on the Merri-bek Youth Facebook page or on our Instagram account.

  • Merri-bek Youth is Merri-bek City Council's dedicated youth service. We run services for young people aged 12 to 24 years old.

    Our staff have a range of experience and backgrounds. All our staff have experience working with young people.

  • We commit to having a clear process of handling complaints. This includes complaints about the behaviour of our staff.

    If you need to make a complaint, you can call Merri-bek City Council on 9240 1111. You can also make a complaint at the Merri-bek Civic Centre (90 Bell Street, Coburg) or at the Oxygen Youth Space (4/8 Gaffney St, Coburg).

    The Manager of Youth Services will respond to all complaints. We will keep our records confidential.

    For more details on making a complaint, go to our Complaints page.

Your safety

Merri-bek Youth is committed to being a Child Safe organisation and has zero tolerance for child abuse. We recognise our legal and moral responsibilities in keeping young people safe from harm and promoting their best interests.

At Merri-bek Youth we support and encourage the empowerment and participation of young people. We aim to create a child safety culture and are continually working to ensure we have child safe and friendly environments where young people are heard, respected, and encouraged to reach their full potential.

  • If you or another young person is in immediate danger call 000(triple zero) and ask for the police.

    Council can provide support if you have concerns about your safety and wellbeing and you don’t know who else to contact. We have processes in place to ensure any reports of child safe concerns are listened to, treated seriously and responded to quickly. All reports will be treated confidentially. Once a report is received a Child Safe Officer will respond within one working day.

    Report your concern 

  • Merri-bek City Council is committed to being a Child Safe organisation and has zero tolerance for child abuse. We recognise our legal and moral responsibilities in keeping children and young people safe from harm and promoting their best interests.

    You can find out more on the Merri-bek's Child Safety and wellbeing page

1800 MY YOUTH 

Call 1800 MY YOUTH (1800 699 688) for support, advice and information. Our helpful and knowledgable team can assist you between Monday and Friday from 9am to 5pm. 

Our strategies for supporting young people

Our youth strategies guide the creation and delivery of all our services. These strategies also help us to provide for the current and future needs of young people.

  • The Children, Young People and Families Plan 2021-2025 (PDF 888 kB) (the ‘Plan’) aims to improve health, wellbeing, and educational outcomes.

    The Plan is focused on children and young people from birth to adulthood (0 to 24 years) and their families.

    The Plan’s vision is that all children, young people, and families live in a community where they are healthy, resilient, empowered, safe, and belong. This vision sets an ambitious goal to improve outcomes across a range of areas to ensure children and young people have the best start in life, engage in educational opportunities, actively contribute to their community, and transition into further training and employment.

    You can find out more about this plan on our Children, Young People and Families Plan page.

  • Our Youth Action Plan 2020 to 2021 (2019) (PDF 761Kb) is tied to our full potential strategy (see above). In order to act on our full potential strategy we have committed to develop a series of 2-year action plans which will enable flexibility, continuous improvement, and allow us to make priority adjustments to our plan.

    We send our yearly update reports from our action plan to Council. Council then decide if they will endorse these reports. Currently there are no endorsed reports. When endorsed reports are available you will be able to access them here.

    The first and current youth action plan for 2020 to 2021 was developed and endorsed in 2019, and has been aligned to Merri-bek youth's current available resources.

  • In 2018 we consulted with approximately 2,300 young people, local service organisations and educators to find out how we can improve our services and offerings to help young people reach their full potential.

    Out of this research and consultation we developed 'Full Potential: A Strategy for Merri-bek's Young People in 2019. This strategy outlines 5 outcome areas where we can best support young people, including:

    1. Improving our service system

    2. Enhancing voice and participation

    3. Increasing skills and job opportunities

    4. Supporting health and resilience

    5. Providing youth friendly spaces and places

    You can find out more about this strategy by downloading Full Potential - A Strategy for Merri-bek's Young People (2019) (PDF 15Mb), and you can also see our Young People in Merri-bek: A Needs and Services Analysis (2018) (PDF 835Kb) that was also created based on our research and consultation phase.

  • For more information about Merri-bek Youth strategies you can email the Youth Projects Coordinator Damien Woodcock at or you can speak to the youth team by calling 9389 8647.

Data and social research

We use data and social research to understand the needs and challenges of Merri-bek's young people and develop our services to suit. 

Student Placements and Work Experience

We are committed to the ongoing professional development of students preparing for a career in Youth Work. We provide placement opportunities for students at University and TAFE.  We also host secondary school students for Work Experience. If you are interested, please email with your course requirements and hours.

  • Typical opportunities include:

    • Attending Network Meetings
    • Contributing to Policy Development
    • Assisting with Funding Applications
    • Industry Training and Development
    • Research and Presentations
    • Observation

    Merri-bek Youth accepts placement applications year-round. 

    Express your interest by contacting Liam Walsh at 

    Please include the following information in your email:

    • Course enrolment details
    • How many placement hours you are seeking
    • Any special interests/passion areas

    We welcome project proposals from students who have a particular area of interest. 

    Perhaps you've got a vision for a workshop, a social awareness initiative or public health campaign - If so, we'd love to hear from you!

  • We are happy to provide work experience for secondary school students.

    To find out more about available opportunities please email Liam Walsh at