Tag archives: Prince’s Trust

Monday, 14 January 2013

The Prince’s Trust Youth Index 2013

The Prince’s Trust Youth Index 2013 has just been published. It contains some distressing findings about the lives of 16-25 year-olds. These are some of the most significant:

  • 28% of young people in work and almost half of NEETs feel down or depressed “always” or “often”.
  • NEETs are significantly less happy across all areas of their lives.
  • 10% of young people generally and over 20% of NEETs feel they cannot cope with day-to-day life.
  • Almost a third of young people “always” or “often” feel lonely, and those who are unemployed are significantly more likely to feel this way.
  • A quarter of young people have put their ambitions on hold due to the recession.
  • More than a third of NEETs feel they have no future due to the recession, and over half feel their life has been put on hold due to unemployment.
  • One in 10 young people believe they did not grow up in a supportive family environment.
  • 42% of young people who did not grow up in a supportive environment are unhappy with their lives (compared to 14% of those that did receive support), and those that did not are twice as likely to be NEETs.
  • Over 20% of young people say the internet gives them a sense of community and friendship they do not have elsewhere in life (rising to a third among those who are unemployed).
  • More than one in ten young people have been bullied online.
  • Two thirds of young people would prefer to talk to someone in person than online if they had a problem.

Thursday, 5 January 2012

Prince’s Trust Youth Index 2012

Every year the Prince’s Trust produces an invaluable survey into the well-being of 16-25 year-olds. This year’s has just been published, and there are some disturbing findings.

The impact of lower educational attainment on mental health is deeply worrying. 47% of young people with fewer than five A*-C GCSEs often or always feel down or depressed, compared with 30% of those who are more qualified. They are three times more likely to lack confidence, and significantly more likely to believe they won’t be able to achieve what they want in life. The survey also highlights a previously unidentified link between lower educational attainment and lack of routine during childhood (set bedtimes, regular mealtimes, consistency of housing). Those who lacked structure when growing up are markedly less happy than their peers.

There is a large discrepancy in how satisfied young people feel with their lives, depending on employment status. NEETs are less content with all areas of their lives than those in work, education or training. They are far more likely to feel down or depressed, and are more pessimistic about their family relationships and their friendships. Many are apprehensive about their future employment prospects, especially those who have been out of work for over a year. Youth unemployment is having an increasing impact on well-being.

The survey explores the aftermath of the riots. Young people in riot-affected areas are considerably less hopeful than their peers. Two-thirds feel the riots have had a negative effect on young people’s prospects in their areas.

Not everything in the report is gloomy. Overall confidence levels and happiness among young people have increased slightly in the last year. There are several inspiring case studies of young people who have turned their lives around as a result of Prince’s Trust initiatives.

Saturday, 30 July 2011

Broke, not broken: tackling youth poverty and the aspiration gap

This new report from the Prince’s Trust investigates the impact of youth poverty on young people’s aspirations and self-belief. It exposes a huge gap in aspiration between the UK’s richest and poorest young people. Young people growing up in poverty are four times more likely to believe that they will not be able to achieve their life and career goals than those from wealthy backgrounds. It is clear from the report that material poverty in young adulthood is not only strongly linked to poverty of expectations and life-chances but also to poor self-confidence and poor mental and physical health.

These are some other findings in relation to young people from the UK’s poorest families that are particularly significant for people working in schools, colleges and libraries and other parts of the cultural and heritage sector:

  • more than a quarter had few or no books in their home
  • one in three were rarely or never read to by their parents
  • more than a third did not have anywhere quiet at home to do their schoolwork and two-fifths did not have a desk
  • more than a quarter had no access to a computer and almost one in three did not have access to the internet
  • many have struggled with their education

The report contains a number of inspirational case studies: young people who with the help of the Prince’s Trust have succeeded in breaking the cycle of poverty. It concludes with a call to government and businesses to work more closely with charities to improve social mobility and raise aspirations more widely.

The report makes challenging reading. It will certainly inform my training, especially my courses on working with teenagers.