- Social Workers are particularly trained to provide individual support, such as case management and welfare assistance.
- Community Workers are particularly trained to provide community development and group activities.
- Recreation Officers and Occupational Therapists are particularly trained to provide sporting and developmental activities.
- Psychologists and Doctors are particularly trained to provide intensive support in areas such as mental health and substance abuse.
- Adult Educators and Teachers are particularly trained to provide education and training.
- Correctional Officers are particularly trained to supervise prisoners.
What's left? Could the youth sector simply function as an amalgam of people with training in different specialist areas, who collectively provide services to young people? Is there the need for a distinct occupational group called Youth Workers? Looking superficially at the needs of young people from a purely functional perspective, it would appear that there is little justification for a discrete occupation targeted at work with young people.
The central questions which underly this paper are:
- Is youth work a unique activity which requires specific, specialist competencies?
- Is the youth sector something more than an amalgam of various existing occupations applied to young people?