Mission Australia launches annual youth survey to discover the biggest concerns facing young people

Speak up: Mission Australia has opened its annual youth survey and is encouraging young people to have a say on the issues that most concern them. Picture: Peter Braig
Speak up: Mission Australia has opened its annual youth survey and is encouraging young people to have a say on the issues that most concern them. Picture: Peter Braig

Go on, have a say - this is the message hoping to reach the nation's youth to find out more about teenagers' behaviours and health.

To mark the 18th birthday of Mission Australia's annual Youth Survey, young people aged 15-19 are being encouraged to share their thoughts on bullying, disability and whether they think they have enough support regarding these matters.

With a record number of more than 28,000 young people participating across Australia in 2018, including 8211 young people in NSW, Mission Australia aims to reach well over 30,000 participants nationwide in celebration of the milestone.

Mission Australia State Director Nada Nasser encourages young people in St George and Sutherland Shire to share their aspirations, concerns and views for the charity's study.

"Every year [this] offers an important temperature check on the thoughts, concerns and aspirations of young Australians," she said.

"Thanks to the youth survey, many organisations like Mission Australia have current evidence on what young people are thinking and experiencing, which helps us to advocate with them and for them for the services and policy changes that they need."

People can share their thoughts online, at school or through a community group.

"We're hoping to see more high schools, sporting teams, community youth groups, church groups and community service organisations urge young people to get involved this year," Ms Nasser said.

"We truly value the voices of young people, and they must be heard. The more young people we have participate, the more comprehensive and inclusive the results will be."

In 2018, just under half (45.3 per cent) NSW young people identified mental health as the top issue facing Australia. This was up from 38 per cent in the year before.

The top three issues identified by young people from NSW were mental health, alcohol and drugs and equity and discrimination.

Young Australians in need of support vwere also recently announced as budget winners. More than $700 million across seven years will go towards mental health services. This include $461 million specifically dedicated to young people.

To take part in the survey, go here.

Share the word using #YouthSurvey2019 #YouthSurvey18thBirthday

The survey closes July 31 and results will be released in late November.

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