The ‘Da Friday’ program is an innovative non-profit initiative founded and sustained by volunteers with the mission to improve the life opportunities of Muslim youth aged students by using a comprehensive approach aimed at developing their education, capabilities and skills.
The ‘Da Friday’ program was established in 2006. The idea of establishing such a program arose in order to help educate Muslim youth using Australian values and the Islamic faith in tandem to promote ‘mateship’, honesty and harmony while at the same time helping to provide windows of opportunities for such people to successfully integrate and contribute to Australian society and its way of life.
For youth living in disadvantaged communities, ‘Da Friday’ represents hope. Through a primarily volunteer staff, we have empowered youth to reach their full potentials by providing tutoring programs, recreational opportunities, cultural activities, career advice and counselling services that promote whole-child development. ‘Da Friday’ promotes the broad development of cognitive, behavioural, and social capabilities of youth living in high-risk environments using a multifaceted strategy.
What do the Stats Say?
Today, the ‘Da Friday’ program attempts to market itself as a centre of where youth can be a part of a nightly program that is conducted in an environment that is safe and conducive to learning while also promoting values education. According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS), the 2006 census showed that of Muslims subsiding in Australia, 48.7% of those were under the age of 25. This statistic is in stark contrast to the general Australian population where only 33.4% were under the age of 25.
As a result of the above statistics, ‘Da Friday’ has had an exceptionally high response by parents and youth subsiding in New South Wales wanting to take part in ‘Da Friday’ and our new ‘Youth in Focus’ program. The above statistics clearly shows the paramount importance of establishing such a service in order to help serve the needs of the increasing number of youth in Sydney. Therefore, this project was initially drafted as a direct response to the challenge to meet these demands as they arise rather than waiting for a crisis point to be reached.
What is the ‘Da Friday’ Program?
The ‘Da Friday’ youth program was established in 2006 with the youth in mind. It is a program which caters for youth who are predominantly of high school age. A main focus of the program is to provide a safe and entertaining environment for the youth to socialise while also developing their education, capabilities and skills.
Time and Location:
The program is run by volunteers every Friday night between the hours of 6pm-9pm and throughout the school holidays. All Friday night programs are held at the UMA centre located at 69 Croydon St, Lakemba.
An array of services are available to youth involved in the ‘Da Friday’ program. These include:
- Team building activities
- Values based lessons
- Workshops and seminars targeting social concern of youth
- Movie nights
- Sporting and Recreational Activities:
- Table tennis
- Counselling services
- Rock climbing
School Holiday Program: (run throughout the year)
- Rock climbing
- Sleep overs
- Laser Skirmish
- And more…
The youth of Sydney today will be its citizens of the future. Therefore, the program’s vision is to ensure the youth of today have a chance to grow up in an environment that makes them proud of their homes, families and country. Click Here for the Photo Gallery