66% of young people in Kilkenny and Carlow think their physical health could be better and 63% believe their mental and emotional health could be better, while 37% are unsure if they feel positive about their future.
These are among the findings of a survey of 276 young people in Kilkenny and Carlow conducted by Kilkenny and Carlow Education and Training Board’s (KCETB) youth office. The survey was conducted in February of this year and the majority of those surveyed were aged between 10 and 18 years.
While 68% of the young people surveyed said they feel happy and satisfied with their lives, 62% said they are worried about school and exam pressure. 40% of those surveyed said they have felt left out, isolated or discriminated against.
Other findings within the survey show that 39% of the young respondents said they are most worried about their mental wellbeing. However, 82% of respondents said that they have an adult in their lives that they can talk to and get support when needed
KCETB undertook the survey to hear young people’s opinions and concerns in preparation for the next cycle of the governmental youth finding scheme, UBU – Your Place Your Space, which provides almost €40million for targeted youth services nationally.
“Understanding the current issues that affect young people is crucial so we can continue to support the services that provide young people with the programmes, supports and activities they need and want”, commented Saoirse Prendergast, KCETB Youth Officer.
“The high level of mental health and emotional wellbeing difficulties, as evidenced by the survey, highlight the need for continued targeted youth work programmes and services to support young people”, added Saoirse Prendergast.
KCETB’s Youth Office is responsible for the provision, co-ordination, administration and assessment of youth work in Kilkenny and Carlow. Earlier this year, the KCETB Youth Office pledged €1.2million to youth services and voluntary youth clubs in Kilkenny and Carlow. Services providers that benefit from the funding include Ossory Youth Services, Carlow Regional Youth Services, Foróige DRUM Youth Project and Health Café, Kilkenny, and several voluntary youth clubs and groups across the two counties.