14,461 Young People – stress online counselling and families…where’s your focus for 2014?

The much anticipated annual Mission Australia Youth Survey (as you are probably very aware) has been released! How many organisations take the 2013 data into account and work to shift their focus into 2014? Is a change needed at all? There are some interesting findings presented in the report including some thought provoking issues concerning the 14,461 young people surveyed.

Coping with stress was the top issue of concern, with 38.3% of respondents indicating that they were either extremely concerned (15.8%) or very concerned (22.5%) about this issue.postquote1

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Almost two thirds (64.1%) of young people indicated that they werenot comfortable using a telephone hotline for advice, support or information, 59.7% were not comfortable using an online counselling website and 49.2% were not comfortable contacting a community
agency
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Page 20 provides an insight into the significant role that parents, friends and the internet play as information resources as well as forms of support and advice too. What is encouraging is that 66.9% of young people responded with an overall positive outlook on life and this translates into their future perspectives too:

Over two thirds of respondents felt either positive (48.8%) or very positive (18.7%) about the
future.postquote1

In total, 1,235 young people from Western Australia (WA) aged 15 to 19 years responded to Mission Australia’s Youth Survey 2013 To view the Western Australia breakdown: Page 139 onward. School and study problems ranked the top most concerning for WA young people – coping with stress followed closely behind. Where do young people from WA turn for information, advice and support?

  • The internet was the primary source of information for young people (69.5%), followed by parent/s (51.0%) and magazines (45.8%).
  • Respondents felt most comfortable going to friend/s (63.6%), parent/s (54.7%) and relatives/family friends (51.2%) for advice.
  • Friend/s (66.6%) were again the primary source of support for young people, followed by parent/s (58.6%) and relatives/family friends (49.1%).
  • Almost two thirds of young people from WA (64.2%) indicated that they were not comfortable using a telephone hotline for advice, support or information, 59.7% were not comfortable using an online counselling website and 49.7% were not comfortable contacting a community agency.postquote1

So what could this mean for those who work in the youth sector? The trending of peer to peer based approaches to support young people and disseminate information through, could be worth reviewing – further deepening the support provided to parents appears to be worth considering as portals for providing sound advice to young people. If the internet is the greatest information source, then what is your website looking like? What does this look like in the realm of social media and hand-held devices? What changes if any, will you be making in 2014 to meet the preferences/needs of young people? We would love to hear you thoughts on what approaches work for you! Team IIOY All information has been obtained from the Mission Australia Youth Survey 2013 and we would like to acknowledge Mission Australia for collecting this great data. Website:https://www.missionaustralia.com.au/what-we-do-to-help-new/young-people/understanding-young-people/annual-youth-survey

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