To kick off Youth Week (13-22 April), Mission Australia has opened their annual Youth Survey and the charity is hoping for a record number of young people aged 15-19 to get involved and have their say.

This year’s survey will ask new focus questions to delve deeper into issues around social media, alcohol and drugs, barriers to employment and how young people feel about their community.

With a record number of 24,000 young people participating last year, Mission Australia hopes to reach more than 30,000 participants by the survey’s closing date at the end of July.

Mission Australia CEO James Toomey urges young people across Australia to speak up and get involved in the charity’s 17th annual Youth Survey.

“The Youth Survey provides an important snapshot of young Australians and offers many important insights. It equips organisations like Mission Australia with current evidence on how young people are faring so we can advocate on their behalf for the services and broader policy changes that they need.

“By providing a platform where young people can share their aspirations, concerns and thoughts year on year, it offers invaluable insights into what’s really going on in their lives. We are encouraging even more young people to take part in our Youth Survey this year including high schools, community youth groups, sporting teams, community service organisations and church groups. The more young people we have participate, the more comprehensive the results will be,” said Mr Toomey.

In 2017, the top three issues identified by young people as most important in Australia today were mental health, alcohol and drugs and equity and discrimination, with mental health emerging as the top concern for the first time in the 16-year history of reporting. In the survey, young people continue to highlight coping with stress, school or study problems and body image as their top three issues of personal concern.

Mission Australia’s Youth Survey 2018 is open to all young people living in Australia aged 15-19 years old. To take part in the survey, go to www.missionaustralia.com.au/youthsurvey. Share the word using #YouthSurvey2018 The survey closes on 31 July 2018, with results to be released in late November.

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Purpose - 'Inspired by Jesus Christ, Mission Australia exists to meet human need and to spread the knowledge of the love of God'