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When I walk in the streets of the Green Square hood, 
once where old factories and warehouses stood 
Fresh apartments, just ‘cause they could

~ 'Green Square, What’s Good?’ by Green Square School
 Listen to the poem

Youth Unlocked creates tailored creative literacy programs that collaborate with poets, Elders, Language Custodians, musicians, artists and educators to help young people outside traditional education settings and who attend Behavioural Schools, Rehabilitation and Juvenile Justice Centres (Educational and Training Units).

Young people involved in the justice system have commonly experienced significant trauma, interrupted schooling, and are often disadvantaged in multiple and cumulative ways. 

Current figures from Juvenile Justice NSW show 47% of young people in custody are from First Nations backgrounds, which is even higher than the 25% of First Nations people that comprise our adult prison population. We know that once people enter the Justice System, 60% are likely to return.*

* Data from

Youth Unlocked nurtures the potential of young people through the reflective and healing power of poetry, encouraging self-expression that helps young people find their voice, write, record, perform and share their stories to:

  • support literacy, learning and wellbeing
  • encourage creativity, confidence and connection
  • facilitate positive expression and healing


2021 Program

2020 Program

2019 Program

2018 Program

2017 Program

Partners and Supporters

Youth Unlocked is supported by the Oranges & Sardines Foundation and the following: