The Oasis Youth Homelessness Project

Shark Island Institute


There has been an increase of youth homelessness nationally in the last five years - with 43,500 young people between 12 and 24 reported experiencing homelessness in 2018. Youth unemployment has also increased to 14.13% compared to 7.4% for the entire workforce, according to the (Australian Bureau of Statistics, 2020). In response, Shark Island Productions created ‘Life After The Oasis’, a sequel to The Oasis Documentary. They partnered with YLab to provide young people with lived experience meaningful employment in designing and delivering pathways out of homelessness in partnerships with schools.

What we did

YLab employed ten young people with lived experience (YLab Associates and project Director) alongside two educators to co-design and co-deliver the schools initiative

We worked with nine schools to co-design the in school and online initiatives

We ran an 8-week pilot leadership and community action program with Eltham College led by the Oasis Associates, along with workshop pilots at Bialik College and the What Up West Conference

We developed The Oasis Schools Action Kit to equip teachers and students with resources to learn and take action in their communities for young people at risk, or experiencing, homelessness

We developed a guide to valuing lived experience which highlights key principles and learnings from the Oasis Associate employment model.


2,183 hours of employment to Oasis Associates

300 visitors accessed The Oasis Schools Action Kit

956 total downloads of Life After The Oasis film

Students scored 4.1 out of 5 “I could better notice and help someone at school who might be at risk of or homeless” (Eltham College pilot)

Students scored 4.1 out of 5 “I feel like the Oasis program has provided me with tools to better reflect on myself”

Students scored 4 out of 5 “Through the Oasis program I have more confidence and belief in what I can do about social issues”.

The team

We brought together a team of Associates and a Director, who came together to design with a background of diverse lived experience and expertise.

with Biance (Bee) Orsini, Adam Legg, Morgan Lee Cataldo, Leanne Ong, Sasha Sullivan, Casey Hawkins, Emma Foster, Sakshi Thakur, Marta Malchevski & Kaitlyne Bowden.