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Kath Ford; Richard Freund
Mental health issues are triggered and prolonged by multiple factors, particularly rising levels of global poverty and inequality. Young Lives research shows that COVID-19, climate and conflict crises are exacerbating this further, triggering high levels of anxiety and depression and declining well-being amongst young people at a critical period in their lives when resilience to mental health issues is typically built. This policy brief brings together new evidence from our longitudinal study on how global crises are impacting the mental health of disadvantaged youth in poor countries and calls for urgent action to support developing countries to respond effectively.
Throughout Young Lives, This study has provided various measures of food insecurity. These include the Household Food Insecurity Access Scale (HFIAS), developed by the Food and Nutrition Technical Assistance Project (FANTA) (Coates, Swindale, and Bilinsky 2007), but also stand-alone questions, such as ‘Was there ever no food to eat in your household because of a lack of money?’ which was employed across different survey rounds in all four Young Lives study countries: Ethiopia, India (the states of Andhra Pradesh and Telangana), Peru and Vietnam. In response to the global COVID-19 pandemic, the Listening to Young Lives at Work was conducted: COVID-19 phone survey to record the experiences of young people during the outbreak. To estimate food insecurity in the four study countries the Food and Agricultural Organisation’s (FAO) Food Insecurity Experience Scale (FIES) (Cafiero, Viviani, and Nord 2018) have been utilised . This technical note provides information on how estimates of food insecurity were calculated using the FIES approach, in a manner comparable to the methods used by the FAO to inform the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) food security indicator.
After two years of the COVID-19 pandemic, our four study countries are each facing significant economic and social challenges, and rapidly changing circumstances. But COVID-19 is not the only global crisis; our evidence from Ethiopia reflects unprecedented times, as vulnerable families grapple with the compounding effects of civil conflict and climate change. This policy brief summarises key findings from the fifth call in the Young Lives phone survey, conducted between October and December 2021, and draws on previous COVID-19 calls, as well as longitudinal data collected since 2001 through regular in-person surveys. The brief builds on previous policy recommendations from our phone survey, highlights how the pandemic, alongside climate change and conflict, is continuing to have an adverse impact on the lives of young people in low- and middle-income countries, and presents emerging policy recommendations in response to this impact. Our analysis demonstrates that urgent action is required if we are to get progress towards the SDGs back on track.
Renu Singh; Kath Ford
Gina Crivello; Agazi Tiumelissan; Karin Heissler
Catherine Porter; Alula Pankhurst; Kath Ford
Santiago Cueto; Alula Pankhurst; Renu Singh
Over the last two decades, there has been evidence of significant
improvements in the overall living standards of Young Lives families.
Young people are substantially better off than their parents and have
aspirations for social mobility, despite the impact of persistent
inequalities undermining educational outcomes and the chances of getting
a decent job. New research from the Young Lives COVID-19 phone survey in Ethiopia,
India, Peru, and Vietnam paints a worrying picture of how the economic
and social impact of COVID-19 lockdowns and related restrictions could
not only halt progress made over the last two generations, but could
also reverse life chances and entrench existing inequalities for many
young people, hitting those living in poor communities hardest.
UNICEF Innocenti's Children and COVID-19 Library is a database collecting research from around the world on COVID-19 and its impacts on children and adolescents.
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