Bimberi Youth Justice Centre

About Bimberi

Bimberi Youth Justice Centre (Bimberi) is a state of the art youth detention facility that is the first in Australia to operate within human rights requirements, and is designed to meet human rights standards. It accommodates children and young people aged 10 to 21 years old who have been refused bail or are sentenced to a period of detention by the ACT’s Children's Court or Supreme Court.

At Bimberi young people are supported to understand, address and take responsibility for their actions that led them to come into Bimberi. They are supported to get back on track, continue learning and build skills, avoid future criminal behaviour and return confidently to the community through a range of programs and services. Bimberi does this by providing a safe, secure, supportive and rehabilitative environment for young people in custody resulting in the young people:

  • feeling safe, valued, respected, supported, empowered and hopeful about their future
  • being prepared to successfully participate socially and economically in the community.

The people who work at Bimberi include youth workers, educators, therapists, security guards and more. Many community organisations provide essential support services to Bimberi that help the young people during their time at Bimberi and help prepare them for when they leave.

Bimberi contributes to the Community Services Directorate’s goals of giving young people a ‘positive start’ and ‘support to grow and develop’. The strategic direction for youth justice in the ACT is set out in the Blueprint for Youth Justice in the ACT 2012-22. The Blueprint has a focus on early intervention, prevention and diversion – custody is a last resort.

Bimberi handbook: A guide for young people in Bimberi Youth Justice Centre

The Bimberi Handbook is provided to young people in Bimberi. It tells them what happens in Bimberi, who works there, their rights and responsibilities, and how they will be supported while they are there.

Bimberi Handbook: A guide for young people in Bimberi youth Justice Centre

Education and training

All young people attend education or training each day. The Murrumbidgee School provides a range of programs including recognised certificate courses, tutoring and transitional support back into the community. There are also opportunities for sport and recreation, art and cultural programs and school holiday activities.

Murrumbidgee School is operated within Bimberi by the Education Directorate.

Health and wellbeing

All young people at Bimberi have access to primary health care provided by Canberra Health Services (Justice Health Services and Forensic Mental Health Services) and through partnerships with community organisations. These services provide post-release support by connecting young people to health services in the community for their ongoing care.

The key priorities for Canberra Health Services is to ensure young people have their individual needs met and both are committed to offering ongoing care and support to the young people. As part of the health and wellbeing model used at Bimberi, young people are able to connect with their existing community services and supports while at Bimberi.


Bimberi and CYPS will continue to manage and respond to COVID-19 and whenever needed make changes to the way services are provided based on the current advice of health and government leaders. Bimberi and CYPS remain focused on protecting the health and safety of young people they work with as well as their dedicated staff, and will continue to operate in a COVID-smart way. For specific information about CYPS support for young people on youth justice orders, go to Information for young people involved with youth justice

Charter of rights for young people in Bimberi

The Charter of Rights for Young People in Bimberi (the Charter) aims to strengthen the protection of young people in Bimberi by developing awareness of young people’s rights and responsibilities. The Charter embodies the ACT’s commitment to maintaining a human rights compliant framework. The Charter was developed in consultation with key stakeholders, including young people in Bimberi.

You can learn more about the Charter, and download a copy, at The Charter of Rights for Young People in Bimberi.

Bimberi community residential services

Bimberi Community Residential Services:

  • supports young people to divert them from future criminal behaviour and involvement in the justice system
  • provides safety and security for young people and the community
  • provides accommodation and rehabilitation
  • implements case management plans to help young people transition back into the community.

Narrabundah House Indigenous Supported Residential Facility

Narrabundah House Indigenous Supported Residential Facility is a part of Bimberi’s Community Residential Services. It provides supported accommodation services to young Indigenous men aged between 15 and 18 years old who are on community-based orders from the courts. Narrabundah House is a community-based accommodation program that provides the men with supported accommodation in a safe, structured and inclusive environment.

Narrabundah House uses a resident focused, mutually respectful and goal orientated approach meeting the needs of the young men staying there. The program aims to develop the young men’s independent living skills, connections to culture and engagement with services, while helping them to access employment, education or training.

Information for families and visitors

Family, carers and important people and support services in a young person’s life are encouraged to stay in contact with and continue to be a central part of the young person’s life while they are at Bimberi.

For information about how you can stay in contact with a young person at Bimberi, including visiting them, go to Information for families and visitors.


The Children and Young People Act 2008 provides the legal framework for Bimberi to perform its responsibilities. Bimberi policies and procedures developed under the Act are notifiable and available on the ACT Legislation Register

Bimberi also works in accordance with the Human Rights Act 2004.

After hours bail support service

For young people not in Bimberi and instead on bail orders, CYPS provides a service to support them to comply with their bail conditions. This service also assists young people in police custody by arranging suitable community-based options as an alternative to custody and Bimberi.

To contact the Service, free call 1800 178 277.

Page updated: 04 May 2023