Region’s youth asked to share their thoughts

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by Greta Yeoman

South Canterbury youth – have your voices heard.

That is the message from YMCA South and Mid Canterbury as it launches its two-yearly youth survey.

The survey is open to people aged 12-24 years who live in Mid or South Canterbury.

Topics include education, career, social and transportation opportunities, as well as attitudes regarding stress, alcohol use, volunteering, the environment and social media use.

A report including the survey results will be made public in late July.

YMCA marketing and communications manager Michele Keggenhoff said while many Canterbury-wide surveys had a strong Christchurch focus, this survey was specifically for Mid and South Canterbury youth and their thoughts.

YMCA South Canterbury communications manager Michele Keggenhoff

“Since we began the survey in 2014, we consistently heard that young people don’t think there are many opportunities for them to influence decisions that affect them.

“Well, here’s a great opportunity for young people to say what life is like for them here, what they’d change, what matters most to them, what concerns them.”

She said the survey results would be shared widely with people in government, business, education, health and social sectors.

About 720 took part in the 2017 survey and similar numbers were hoped for this year, Ms Keggenhoff said.

The survey has grown to cover the four districts of Ashburton, Timaru, Mackenzie and Waimate.

“We’re especially interested in hearing from those in the 19-24-year-old age bracket and from those living outside our main centres of Ashburton and Timaru.”

Ms Keggenhoff said the YMCA was keen to hear from those who may have already left school and who could either be working or in tertiary study.

The Youth Survey can be found on the YMCA South & Mid Canterbury Facebook page and its website: www.ymcasc.org.nz.