Unemployment. Eroding the confidence and asperations of young lives.
Being unemployed, especially long term, can have devastating effects on a person’s life, whether that’s social, financial or another area completely.
Two of the biggest problems and main causes of youth unemployment are a poor education and lack of work experience. Many paths are closed if a young person fails to get the correct grades, and if they cannot find or get experience in their chosen field, it is likely they won’t be offered the job.
That is not to say that young people cannot get jobs without education or experience. The introduction of apprenticeships, spearheaded by the UK government, has opened new paths to young people. Those who might not be educationally gifted could find themselves talented in a more practical job, such as construction or hairdressing.
A third aspect of youth unemployment is a person’s background. A young person from an area of deprivation is more likely to have fewer opportunities than a young person from a rich family. Living in a deprived area within a town will also offer poorer Ofsted graded schools than those in richer areas.
Without jobs, young people can start to feel excluded from social groups and will have a lower life satisfaction than those in jobs. Some will even turn to crime, resulting in prison. Many go on to re-offend and enter a cycle of entering and leaving prison.
However, the main consequence will be on a young person’s health, both physically and mentally. Failure to get a job could result in rigid anxiety or depression, along with a loss of confidence and self-belief.
That is why supporting and helping young people access to education, employment, and training is crucial. They provide a young person with independence, a routine, a new social system, and new opportunities. This not only benefits the individual but also the community they are in and is why we are passionate about seeing lives and whole communities transformed.
If young people can get their foot on the first step, they can begin walking up the rest, and could become something greater than they expected.
Written by Calum Harbor
Starting Point Mentee and Community Journalist