BLACKTOWN Youth Services Association has become savvy to what young women in the area want — to have fun.
Hip-hop dance classes, mosaic making and youth-specific first aid skills are among the the association's answer to the waning interest of young women in what youth services provide.
Manager Natalie Chiappazzo said the Savvy program was tailored for girls aged 12 to 18 and had a successful trial period from July.
About 20 girls participated each week.
"Historically youth services are dominated by young males," she said.
"Recreation activities . . . used to be centred around things like playing pool, video games and sport, and predominantly that attracts young men.
"It can be intimidating for girls who come and see all these boys and go 'Oh, I don't want to hang out there' and don't end up coming back. We've tried to do our own research about why that's happening and we've found that young men tend to come to resolve an issue that they have . . . whereas girls seem to have a better social support network within their friends or family."
This term, the Savvy program will mix education with recreation during a four-week Save a Mate course led by the Red Cross.
Ms Chiappazzo said the sessions would teach youths what to do in a situation where friends may be drunk or have taken and reacted badly to drugs.
Savvy is at Blacktown Youth Services Association, 15 First Avenue, Blacktown on Tuesdays, 3.30pm-5.30pm.
Details: 9831 2095.