Community Youth Response and Diversion (CYRD) is an early intervention and diversion youth justice program. It targets young people aged 10 to 15 years who are at high risk of offending or reoffending but generally not involved in statutory youth justice interventions.

It consists of 4 complementary components that community-based organisations deliver. The components engage young people across various touchpoints to reduce offending or reoffending likelihood.

CYRD delivers a range of services in Cairns, Townsville, Brisbane CBD and Brisbane South, Logan, Ipswich and Gold Coast.

Services are locally driven and coordinated to deliver the best response for each location, including:

  • diversion services (including after hours) to help police divert young people toward support, instead of charging or remanding them in custody
  • intensive case management for young people and their families, to improve behaviour and reduce offending
  • bridging support and alternative education options for young people who have disengaged or at high risk of disengaging from education and are not yet suitable to return to or engage with alternative or mainstream schooling (Bridging to Flexischool)
  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultural mentoring support with a trusted adult mentor who helps the young person have a better understanding of their history and kinship, so they develop a more positive cultural identity.


An outcome evaluation (PDF, 4.2MB) completed by Nous Group Pty Ltd in 2023 found that CYRD has positively impacted at-risk young people. CYRD has enhanced protective factors and positively influenced the offending trajectory of young people.

Key findings of the evaluation included:

  • Short-term outcomes
    • CYRD increased access to prosocial activities and other services, including health, education and employment related services and programs. Appropriate supports are provided to young people who may not otherwise engage with them.
    • CYRD led to positive shifts in young peoples' sense of belonging, their cultural connectedness and orientation towards the future.
    • Service providers supported young people to comply with their bail and other court orders while diverting young people from remand. This was achieved through the combination of after-hours outreach, collaboration with other initiatives, case management, transport services and consistent engagement.
  • Medium-term outcomes
    • 85% of CYRD participants either improved or maintained their assessed rating against youth justice outcomes.
    • Young people engaged with CYRD were more likely to receive the highest rating for cultural connectedness, family relationships, learning participation, employment engagement, community connectedness, and mental health outcomes.
    • Higher intensity support was linked with greater improvements in assessed outcomes.
  • Long-term outcomes
    • CYRD participants showed significant reductions in the number of offences committed compared to a control group not engaged with CYRD.
    • CYRD participants had an average 14% reduction in offences such as arson of building, dangerous driving, and non-aggravated sexual assault. There was a reduction of an average of 2% for these offences in the control group.
  • System benefits
    • CYRD enhanced coordination between services.
    • CYRD established strong links with other community organisations and government agencies, enabling integrated service responses and enhanced information sharing about young people of interest.
    • CYRD encouraged new partnerships and service models, such as a collaboration between a diversion service and a local youth service provider in Logan.
  • Reducing reoffending risk
    • Compared with a control group, CYRD participants showed less escalation in risk ratings across Youth Level of Service/Case Management Inventory (YLS/CMITM) risk factor domains. The control group had higher risk levels post-intervention than the CYRD cohort.
    • For CYRD participants there was an increase in 'low risk' ratings and a reduction in 'high risk' ratings in the domain of 'Attitudes and Orientation'.
  • Cost effectiveness
    • The estimated gross savings from reduction in offending behaviour and days spent in custody is $4.5 million, in the immediate 12 months following engagement with CYRD.
    • Between $2.9 and $6.1 million estimated gross savings from diverting high-risk youth with no existing offences from offending, in the 12 months following CYRD.

Last updated 17 May 2024

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