Back to top

Understanding Local Needs

The Communities That Care process provides communities with a unique approach to identifying and understanding the issues experienced by local children and adolescents.

CTC makes it possible to map factors that are influencing the likelihood that young people in the community will experience outcomes such as school failure and mental health problems, or become involved in behaviours such as alcohol and drug abuse, violence, and antisocial behaviour.

Communities follow a step-by-step process of collecting and collating local data, including administering a local youth survey, to create a profile of risk and protective factors and health and problem behaviours affecting young people in the community. This profile is a powerful tool for planning prevention strategies where genuine priorities are targeted for action. The community can use this information to make informed decisions about how to improve existing prevention-focused services that benefit children and adolescents. Gaps in service provision can also be identified and filled by introducing new interventions as necessary.