About Us

We support homeless and vulnerable young people, and their children, to secure and maintain housing,  address physical and mental health issues, establish successful relationships and support networks, and access pathways to education and employment.

New futures for young people
To enable vulnerable young people and families to navigate life challenges and thrive in the community
Respect. Optimism. Accountability. Resilience.

BYS has a long history of developing innovative services to respond to the identified needs of young people and young families.

Since 1977, Brisbane Youth Service has helped tens of thousands of young people and today employs almost 100 staff, providing a comprehensive range of programs and services for young people and their children across Brisbane.

Our Story

On 30 November 1976 Rev George Robert (Bob) Griffiths convened a meeting to discuss the issue of youth homelessness or ‘street kids” as was the language of the day. At this meeting, the decision was made to establish Brisbane Youth Service (BYS) with sponsorship from five City Churches. BYS commenced operating in February 1977 as a detached youth service providing outreach, referral and follow-up support services to disadvantaged and homeless young people on the streets in inner-city Brisbane.

Over time, BYS expanded its range of services. We also advocated for the establishment of other agencies including the Windsor Youth Emergency Shelter in 1979, Kedron Lodge in 1983 and Open Doors in 2001. In 2011, BYS supported the young people of Othilas Young Women’s Housing and Support Service, as well as Youth Emergency Services and Carina Youth Agency in 2015 when they closed.

Strategic Goals 2022-25


  • Housing & Homelessness
  • Primary & Mental Health
  • Domestic & Family Violence


BYS is an employer of choice and builds a capable, engaged and effective workforce.

Innovation & Research
BYS is a leader in evidence-informed practice and collaborative research that drives innovation.

Youth Engagement
Young people inform and help shape BYS services.

Digital & Technology
BYS applies digital and technology solutions to enhance service delivery and increase operational efficiency.

BYS secures long-term, suitable sites for all operations.

Our People

At the heart of Brisbane Youth Service is a diverse team of almost 100 full-time, part-time, and casual staff dedicated to creating new futures for young people.

The talent BYS attracts are driven by a shared purpose to empower vulnerable young people and their children to navigate life challenges and thrive in the community. A dynamic mix of experience and specialised skills, our people are caring, dedicated, resilient and the key to helping young people achieve meaningful, positive change.

Quality, Research, and Innovation

Brisbane Youth Service continues to develop and implement a range of new services and programs to support the growing needs of young people and young families in Brisbane.

To do this work effectively we actively seek and listen to feedback from young people about BYS services, research youth and community sector trends, and systematically collect and analyse service delivery data in collaboration with BYS teams.

Practice Approach

BYS established a new Practice Framework in 2020,
which supports service delivery excellence and acts as a best-practice guide for BYS staff.

The Practice Framework is informed by BYS’s organisational vision and values, driven by evidence informed knowledge and approaches and ensures transparent, consistent and accountable practice. The framework places the young person at the centre of our work. We are committed to high quality service delivery and continual improvement, and an integral part of the practice framework is a strong emphasis on reflection to help achieve this goal.