Mental health is the biggest issue facing young Australians in 2018 according to a newly released report.
Data published in Mission Australia’s annual youth survey has shown that 43% of people between the ages of 15 and 19 believe that mental health is the biggest issue in the country.
Remarkably this figure has more than doubled over the past three years - with concerns now 14% higher than those around drug and alcohol abuse.
Mental health was also highlighted in the personal concerns section of the report, with stress (43%) and mental illness (31%) identified as the first and third biggest individual worries respectively.
As a result of their findings, Mission Australia - one of the largest charitable providers of community services in the country - have recommended the introduction of universal evidence based mental health programs, along with greater access to support networks for young people.
The organisation’s state director for New South Wales, Victoria, and Capital Territory, Nada Nassan, stressed how important it was to respond to the findings.
She said: “As a priority we must ensure that this increased awareness goes hand-in-hand with adequate access to the right help when needed. Access to appropriate and timely support can make a real difference in a young person’s life.
“We must see more investment in evidence based programs that promote mental health and wellbeing in schools, as well as holistic support for young people that meets a range of needs during adolescence; such as assistance with school or study problems and coping with stress.”
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