Young­sters fear Trump and Brexit

South Wales Echo - - NEWS -

BREXIT, the elec­tion of Don­ald Trump and so­cial me­dia have added to the fears of young peo­ple in Wales about their fu­ture, a Prince’s Trust sur­vey shows.

Nearly one in three young peo­ple in Wales say they don’t feel in con­trol of their lives as con­cerns about job prospects, self-con­fi­dence and re­cent po­lit­i­cal events prey on their minds.

The Prince’s Trust Mac­quarie Youth In­dex sur­vey re­veals young peo­ple feel trapped by their cir­cum­stances and out of con­trol of their lives with 17% think­ing their life will amount to noth­ing, no mat­ter how hard they try.

The sur­vey, which asked about young peo­ple’s well­be­ing across a range of ar­eas from fam­ily life to phys­i­cal health, shows their well­be­ing is at its low­est level since the in­dex was first com­mis­sioned eight years ago.

Re­cent po­lit­i­cal events, in­clud­ing Brexit, have made young peo­ple in Wales feel anx­ious about their fu­ture, a spokesman said.

They are also wor­ried about on­line safety and the ef­fect of so­cial me­dia.

One in five say they don’t be­lieve they can change their cir­cum­stances even if they want to and 32% say they don’t feel in con­trol of their lives.

The re­port high­lights a wide range of fac­tors that could be con­tribut­ing to young peo­ple feel­ing their lives are out of their con­trol.

For ex­am­ple, 31% do not feel in con­trol of their job prospects, 45% feel stressed about body im­age and 35% feel stressed about how to cope at work or school.

The Youth In­dex in­di­cates that the cur­rent po­lit­i­cal and eco­nomic cli­mate also ap­pears to be tak­ing its toll on young peo­ple.

A to­tal of 64% of young peo­ple say re­cent po­lit­i­cal events make them feel anx­ious about their fu­ture, with 46% feel­ing more anx­ious about life in gen­eral than a year ago.

Half of the young peo­ple sur­veyed said pres­sures of get­ting a job are greater than a year ago and 45% feel that tra­di­tional goals like own­ing a house or get­ting a steady job are un­re­al­is­tic.

Phil Jones, di­rec­tor of The Prince’s Trust Cymru, said: “This re­port paints a deeply con­cern­ing pic­ture of a gen­er­a­tion who feel their abil­ity to shape their own fu­ture is slip­ping away from them.

“It’s shock­ing how many feel so des­per­ate about their sit­u­a­tion and it is vi­tal that we sup­port them to de­velop the con­fi­dence and cop­ing skills they need to suc­ceed in life.

“The sin­gle most im­por­tant thing we can do to em­power these young peo­ple is to help them into a job, an ed­u­ca­tion course or on to a train­ing pro­gramme. Now, more than ever, we must work to­gether to pro­vide the sup­port and op­por­tu­ni­ties they need to un­lock a brighter fu­ture.”

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