Local young women start their new paths after graduating from police program

Published Tuesday, 06 September, 2022 at 12:30 PM

Minister for Police and Corrective Services and Minister for Fire and Emergency Services
The Honourable Mark Ryan

Ten young Rockhampton women graduating from Project Booyah today were joined by Member for Rockhampton Barry O’Rourke, Member for Keppel Brittany Lauga and Queensland Police Service Inspector Michael Volk.


Each of these young women were specifically chosen to take part in the 16-week early intervention and community inclusion program, run by the QPS. They are taught life skills and provided with mentors to ultimately improve their health, education, employment opportunities and connection to community.


Ms Lauga and Mr O’Rourke, representing Minister for Police Mark Ryan, commended those who had successfully completed the course.


Mrs Lauga said it was in 2015: “Alongside a couple of community members who are really passionate about early intervention programs, I fought really hard to have Project Booyah rolled out in Central Queensland”.


“I congratulate all graduates from the program today,” she said.


“Completing this program is a challenge and it shows real determination and courage to keep showing up and working with each other every day.


“You should be proud of yourselves and each other and I encourage you all to keep working hard to achieve anything you want in life.”


Mr O’Rourke said the program was having a positive effect on the community and potentially even reducing crime and victimisation.


“The Palaszczuk Government supports this program with $1.9 million per annum to continue this invaluable work and support for our young people,” he said.


“Programs like these can have a positive impact by intervening in our young people’s paths and giving them the knowledge and skills to choose a path they want in life.


Inspector Volk said the determination, courage and commitment the young men/women have shown throughout the course has resulted in them successfully graduating.


“Prior to this program, these women were considered at risk in the Rockhampton community. They may have disengaged from their schooling or community for a number of different reasons,” he said.


“During the program, the participants in Rockhampton went on an industry tour, adventure caving, a working farm visit and a high ropes course in between their mentoring.


“Early intervention is at the heart of the Booyah program and it allows the young people who participate to improve their relations with police and other authorities and their connection to community.


“Our young people are our state’s future, and we all have a role to play to give them  the tools, the connections and the experience to make good choices and to reengage with their community and their education.


“Sometimes it’s just about showing up for them, teaching them and providing them guidance and structure throughout the length of the program.


“We are so proud of every single graduate from the Project Booyah program and can’t wait to see what challenges they tackle next, where they take their new skills and the people they decide to become.”


Project Booyah has dedicated police officers in 10 different locations around the state, working with young people every day.


The Rockhampton District has been delivering programs to the local area since 2017.


Media contacts:


Minister ‘s office 3035 8300


Police Media: 3015 2444