Tuesday, June 14th, 2011
Mission Australia is urging all young West Australians to have their say in the charity's 2011 National Survey of Young Australians – the nation’s largest annual report on the views, concerns and values of young people between the ages of 11-24.

The survey closes on 1 July and Mission Australia's WA State Director Ross Kyrwood said it was vital that WA youth were well represented in the findings.

"Mission Australia's annual youth survey is a 'temperature check' on what young people are feeling, what issues concern them, what they think are the main challenges facing the nation and how optimistic they are about the future," Mr Kyrwood said.

"it gives young people a voice across a range of issues and the information is then used to help community groups and governments plan and develop youth services.

"Responses to the survey help governments, youth agencies and ourselves improve and develop programs and strategies that are shaped by the voices of young people themselves."

Last year's survey tested the views of more than 4,200 young West Australians (50,000 young people nationally – its biggest group since the survey began in 2002) between the ages of 11-24 (95.4 per cent aged 11-19).

When asked to rank their personal concerns from 15 issues body image was ranked most frequently in the top three by 28.9 per cent of WA respondents, followed by family conflict at 27.8 per cent and school or study problems at 26.9 per cent.

Body image as a concern increased with age. It was the leading issue for 15-19 year olds while 36.8 per cent of 20-24 year olds in the state considered it a major concern. It was also the chief worry for female West Australians.

"Young people’s concerns can be quite volatile – moving around from year to year – and they differ between age groups so it's important we conduct this survey annually, with as many participants as possible, to obtain an accurate picture.

"The range of concerns – from stress to depression, suicide and body image – also suggest young people are facing increased challenges as they make the transition from adolescence to adulthood," said Mr Kyrwood.

Mission Australia's 2011 National Survey of Young Australians can be completed online at http://www.mayouthsurvey.com.au

It is also available at all Mission Australia services, secondary schools, TAFE facilities and libraries nationwide.

The survey closes on Friday, 1 July with the results to be published later in the year.

Contact Profile

Mission Australia

Mission Australia is an empowering and compassionate community service organisation. We have been helping to transform the lives of Australians in need for almost 150 years.

Arising historically from various City Missions, including Sydney City Mission, our founding purpose is to meet human need and to give expression to the love of God.

We believe in helping Australians in need get back on their feet. We are committed to eliminating disadvantage and creating a fairer Australia.

With more than 450 services across metropolitan, rural and regional Australia - in every state and territory - we assist more than 300,000 people each year.

Through our programs and services we:

* Combat homelessness
* Assist families and children to overcome hardship
* Support disadvantaged young people
* Deliver entry-level training
* Help unemployed people find permanent work

John Cooke
P: 0433 679 780
W: www.hushforhomelessness.com.au


mission australia, youth survey, ross kyrwood



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