Changing the lives of young people in the Hunter Valley region of NSW

Why are we working together?

In 2012, BHP Billiton made a five year commitment to the potential of young people in regional Australia, specifically the Hunter Region community in NSW. With BHP Billiton as Principal Partner, Reach launched their first regional base and the ‘OutREACH Hunter Pilot’ in 2013.

Together, we aim to improve the emotional and social health and wellbeing of young people, aged 10 to 24 in the Hunter.


Over the lifetime of the project, Reach and BHP Billiton have: 

  • Positively impacted the lives of more than 8,000 young people in the Hunter 
  • Worked with more than 20 primary and high schools in the region 
  • Supported the professional development of more than 80 teachers and educators 
  • Harnessed the leadership potential and supporting the professional and personal development of more than 40 young people, the Hunter “Crew” – many of whom will go on to become Reach workshop facilitators.

A partnership with the Hunter Research Foundation has allowed Reach and BHP Billiton to evaluate the impact of the Hunter Pilot. Results indicate: 

  • Reach workshops have a positive impact on wellbeing: There was an increase in overall wellbeing for those students who participated in the Reach workshops (when compared to the control group). Workshops had a positive impact on the overall wellbeing of year 9 students and resulted in an elevation of wellbeing scores to match that of the national average. 
  • Positive impact on protective factors: Workshops significantly impacted on a number of protective factors useful for young people to negotiate life and meet its challenges. For year 7 students, this was improvement in self awareness, perseverance and managing relationships and for year 9 students this was confidence, self belief and making choices.


“…when young people are given the opportunity to express their real selves, they can achieve whatever they want… this process starts with someone believing in them.”

- Jim Stynes, Reach co-founder

We need your support

We need your support to ensure that young people in the Hunter can continue to access Reach workshops. 

If you care about the future generation of the Hunter, please contact Emily Cant on 0417 679 397 or Denise Cheng on 0419 998 287 to find out how you can support us.