Lana Masterson

Runs Down The Track

NSWNomineeLocal Hero2021

Lana Masterson runs Down The Track, an innovative and lifesaving youth program based in Lake Cargelligo, Central West NSW.

Down The Track targets the region’s most marginalised young people, mainly aged between 10 and 20. More than 90 per cent are Indigenous and all live in the drought-ravaged, under-resourced region and face family violence, suicide, unemployment, homelessness and poor mental health.

Almost single-handedly and with compassion, dedication and care, Lana has united police, teachers, politicians, businesses and Elders to keep kids alive, out of jail and thriving.

Lana’s Down The Track program provides mentorship, practical education, training, employment and wellbeing support. It has allowed young people to gain skills, participate in social enterprise, become work ready and re-engage in their community.

Since the program’s 2016 inception, youth crime has fallen significantly. Just as importantly, it has created a connection between all involved and given young people a sense of worth.

Humble and tenacious, Lana’s commitment is total and her door always open to youth in need.