The Safe Space and Take Kare Ambassador program was established in response to concerns about the safety of young people at night, specifically to get kids home safely.
The objectives of the program are to:
- Improve the safety and amenity of the public domain;
- Provide a harm reduction service where vulnerable young people can access support and a safe place;
- Reduce the risk of crime, specifically to prevent intoxicated young people from becoming the victims or perpetrators of crime;
- To collaborate with key stakeholders to establish a governance model that can enhance the night time environment;
- To support organisations that operate in the City at night (e.g. venue security staff, NSW Police and Ambulance).
The Pilot Program was made possible through the City of Sydney (City) working closely with the State Government to develop and deliver the Sydney CBD Entertainment Precinct Plan of Management. The NSW Department of Justice and the City co-funded the pilot and together with the NSW Police, the Thomas Kelly Foundation and St Vincent’s Hospital formed the Steering Group to oversee the pilot. The Safe Space and Take Kare Ambassador Pilot operated for 12 weeks in the City’s CBD from 10 pm to 4 am every Friday and Saturday night from 5 December 2014 till 21 February 2015. A static Safe Space was located in Sydney Square, adjacent to Town Hall. Take Kare Ambassadors provided an outreach service offering practical support to people who were intoxicated, vulnerable, lost and in need of assistance to get transport home. Operated by the Salvation Army, the team comprised a paid staff member and up to 3 trained volunteers.
The purpose of the Safe Space and Take Kare Ambassador program evaluation was to evaluate both the operating model and the outcomes of the program. Whilst there is no existing framework for an evaluation of this kind, estimations have provided a base line for a cost benefit analysis.
Dr Chris Doran