Child Whose Depression Is Sitting On The Floor

COVID’S IMPACT ON THE MENTAL HEALTH OF ISLAND’S YOUNGSTERS REVEALED

A quarter of young people on the Isle of Wight do not feel positive about their future and 7 out of 10 have been worrying a lot, research undertaken by the Isle of Wight Youth Trust shows.

The significant impact COVID-19 has had on the mental health and wellbeing of children and young people on the Island is clear, with young people’s confidence in their future and happiness unquestionably damaged.

In 2021, the independent charity undertook it’s third Island Youth Mental Health Census. A total of 2,241 responses were received from children and young people aged 7 to 25 from across the Island, taking the total number of survey responses received by the Trust in the past 3 years to over 9,000.

Article continues below this advertisement

With the findings from this Census, along with those from the 2019 Census, and 2 COVID touchpoint surveys undertaken in 2020 and early 2021, it is now possible to track the significant impact the pandemic has had on the mental health and wellbeing of young people on the Island.

More young people are reporting feeling alone and isolated, they have been unable to spend time with their friends and peers, they have become increasingly reliant on damaging social media platforms for social interaction. They have also had more time to reflect. Nearly a quarter of respondents aged 11-25 identified as LGBTQ+ in 2021 (an 11% increase from 2019), a further 10% of young people reported being unsure of their sexuality.

Key findings of the research included:

  • 74% of 7–11-year-olds and 78% 11-25 years olds have been worrying a lot – a 16% and 6% increase respectively from 2019
  • 67% of respondents have often felt unhappy, down or tearful (a 7% increase from 2019)
  • 64% of respondents have felt lacking in energy and enthusiasm – for the 11–25-year-olds this figure was 69% (a 12% increase from 2019)
  • 45% of respondents have felt terribly alone and isolated (a 5% increase from 2019). In 2021 8% more 11–25-year-olds reported feeling terribly alone and isolated than they did 2019
  • 36% of respondents aged 11-25 hide or sometimes hide their eating habits
  • 35% of respondents aged 11-25 have deliberately hurt themselves (a 6% increase from 2019)
  • 30% of respondents do not feel positive about themselves
  • 29% of 11–25-year-olds have received unwanted sexual content on social media. Just over 6% of them have had intimate images of themselves shared WITHOUT consent
  • 15% of respondents aged 7-11 do not feel positive about their future, for the 11–25-year-olds, this figure almost doubles to 29%
  • 14% of respondent aged 11-25 have attempted to take their own life (a 3% increase from 2019)

The Trust’s Census findings are reflective of the findings of The Prince’s Trust NatWest Youth Index 2022 which presented an ‘irrefutable truth’ that the pandemic threatens to scar the UK’s young people for life unless action is taken now.

Youthtrustsurvey2022

Article continues below this advertisement

Under new leadership and as part of ambitions transformation plans, the Youth Trust is committed to delivering a service that remains accessible and relevant to the needs of young people aged 4-25 on the Island. The findings of the Trust’s research and conversations with young islanders are helping prioritise need and helping to shape the organisations new strategy which will be launched in the upcoming months.

Youth Trust CEO Jo Dare comments:

“These findings reflect the reasons children, young people and their families are reaching out for support from the Youth Trust. Whilst anxiety remains by far the most common concern young Islanders are presenting with to our Counsellors and Wellbeing practitioners, we are seeing increasing numbers of young people seeking support for low mood, disordered eating and self-harm.

“We remain committed to listening to the voices of children and young people on the Island and it is heartening to see more young people than ever before being aware of the work of the Trust. But, there is still much work to do to ensure all young people can access the right support, in the right place and at the right time.”

Article continues below this advertisement

Don’t miss another story! Get the Island’s latest news delivered straight to your inbox. Sign up to our daily newsletter here.

The views/opinions expressed in these comments are solely those of the author and do not represent those of Island Echo. House rules on commenting must be followed at all times.
13 Comments
Oldest
Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Nick Black
Nick Black
4 months ago

This is what happens when you allow a bunch of BEHAVIOURAL (so-called) Scientists influence Government Policy, closing down schools and keeping people under some Communist form of house arrest!
Strange that these so-called ‘Scientists’ are now nowhere to be seen or heard from. They have a LOT to answer for for the huge amount of damage they have done to the mental health of our young!

Bob
Bob
4 months ago

If I lived on the Isle of Wight I’d worry, covid or not, 11 years old or 50.

Nothing but the truth
Nothing but the truth
4 months ago

Although it’s a beautiful island, I imagine a lot of teenagers are bored. Not a lot of activities, especially out of season. They should get places like the Ice Rink back open offering something for kids, and get youth clubs re-established properly. And most importantly activities that get kids away from screens.

Surfingwithsharks
Surfingwithsharks
4 months ago

this is nonsense, they shouldve asked how many are you on crystal meth, looking at the responses it seems 14% have tried taking their own lives not thought about it actually attempted it, this isn’t correct as data is taken at the hospital, seems more like a japanese suicide cult..14%??? plus the first telling question is sexual orientation which is a loaded que these days..32% is way way above national average which globally is around 4% ..bet theyd have got several yes’s if they asked how many stole planes each night??…

Dr.jollop
Dr.jollop
Reply to  Surfingwithsharks
4 months ago

It is the fashion to be different amongst the young. Even if they are perfectly normal. They just love the attention and don’t want to be left out of certain popular cool kids circles.
The same sort of people who are always getting offended on other people’s behalf. (I think that it is called WOKE) ?
Now it is the “normal” kids that get bullied.
Funny old world.

Tracy Kerr
Tracy Kerr
4 months ago

If you tell them often enough that they have mental health concerns, they will believe you

George East
George East
Reply to  Tracy Kerr
4 months ago

Spot on Trac y and sws. Plenty of evidence out their that the more you focus on and amplify issues, the more people will sign up for and claim them, especially the young. Look what happened when schoolchildren were asked if they might be trapped in the wrong gender. A bit worrying also as I find myself in accord with Dr Jollop.

Jim Bean
Jim Bean
4 months ago

The biggest issue is parents are to soft. People need to man up and get on with it. Everyone is so focused on hiding behind a label.

Dr.jollop
Dr.jollop
Reply to  Jim Bean
4 months ago

Man up ? Who too ?
There children ?
Or today’s neo nazi rich liberal utopian elite socialist sociaty.
(Who are very clever)

Proud Ovener
Proud Ovener
Reply to  Dr.jollop
4 months ago

English does not appear to be your first language!!!

Tyler
Tyler
Reply to  Dr.jollop
4 months ago

Wow! Immature

Mary
Mary
4 months ago

How many of you have lived through a situation, as a child, where you have been told you cannot socialise?? This is unprecedented and has, quite rightly, had an impact on children. As adults we struggled, of course children have. Any flippancy or disregard regarding this is unhelpful.

isle of wighter
isle of wighter
Reply to  Mary
4 months ago

Some of us didn’t struggle – we are quite happy without the endless interruptions of others -we enjoyed the lockdowns, the peace and quiet, the lack of sponging deadbeats on the streets, the lack of drunken slobs around town, the lack of litter and the beautiful silence and being able to walk into the shop without having the burden of speaking with others – bliss.

 

Join our daily newsletter

News, Traffic & Travel Tweets