NÖJA, short for the Lower Austria Working Group for Open Youth Work, is a prominent organization based in Lower Austria, dedicated to advancing and coordinating professional Open Youth Work. Professional Open Youth Work is a structured approach that provides targeted support to young people, with a focus on inclusion and empowerment. It involves qualified staff, whenever possible social pedagogues and social workers, who tailor their services to individual needs and work with communities to provide prevention and intervention programmes. This youth-centred approach aims to create a safe and supportive environment in which young people, most of whom are disadvantaged, can learn and thrive at their critical developmental stage. Youth work encompasses many facets, such as recreational activities, participatory opportunities and also counselling etc.

NÖJA holds the esteemed position of being the officially recognized hub for Open Youth Work in Lower Austria. It plays an integral role as a member of the Lower Austrian Youth Council and serves as the representative of the state within the nationwide network of Open Youth Work, known as bOJA. Serving as a comprehensive platform, NÖJA unites and supports 68 youth work projects and initiatives across the region. With a multifaceted reach, NÖJA is actively engaged at the municipal, federal, state, and European levels.

At the heart of our mission is the commitment to bolster professional Open Youth Work in Lower Austria, with a core objective of enhancing the personal development and well-being of our young population. We are resolutely focused on fostering the growth and ensuring the high quality of Open Youth Work throughout the region. Our organization serves as a dedicated advocate for our members, primarily comprising youth centers and mobile youth work programs. We collaborate closely with local municipalities and various stakeholders to champion the needs and aspirations of young individuals, actively advocating for measures that align with their interests.

Our responsibilities encompass the dissemination of pertinent information to our members, the organization of training opportunities, and the facilitation of networking events to promote knowledge exchange. We are committed to continually expanding the range of services available to professionals in the field of Youth Work. We are strong proponents of improving working conditions and advocating for high-quality standards in the sector. Additionally, we tirelessly champion the creation of safe, inclusive spaces in Lower Austria, where young people can flourish, learn, and engage socially.

Our unwavering dedication to enhancing the quality of our work drives us to stay abreast of the latest research findings and industry developments in professional Open Youth Work. To achieve this, we maintain active membership in the nationwide network, bOJA, and collaborate closely with Youth Info Lower Austria,  esteemed European partners such as LAG Lower Saxony, and other umbrella organization.

Together, we strive to create a brighter future for the youth of Lower Austria, where they have the opportunity to grow, thrive, and shape their own destinies.