Showing gang members a way out of the darkness

Inspired by a Catholic priest from Los Angeles, Australian deputy principal Joanne Alford hopes to re-engage troubled young people and develop their skills by setting up community projects

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Father Gregory Boyle began his presentation about how to tackle gang culture with an unexpected message: young people who are affiliated with gangs do not need to be “changed”, he said, speaking to an audience in Royce Hall at the University of California, Los Angeles, in June. What they need is for someone to help them to remember who they are and to give them the tools to reconnect with their inherent goodness.

I knew immediately this was a message that could help my school.

St Francis Xavier College is a Catholic school in Victoria, Australia, with more than 3,000 students attending across ...

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