#FriendBetter helping young people to increase their skills to support others

Posted 27th February 2024 in Sector news

In mid 2022, RUOK? commissioned research agency, YouthInsight to conduct research to inform RUOK? on how best to support young Australians aged from 12 to 25 years.

The finding of the research was shared in the 'Connecting Young Australians' report, found seven in 10 Australians aged 12 to 25 years do not ask for help when they are experiencing a difficult time and that one in two young people have felt someone close to them was struggling and not asked if they were OK. The leading reasons were feeling like it wasn’t their place (57%), being afraid they would make the situation worse (48%) and not having the confidence (31%).

In response to this research, RUOK? launched, and has continued to encourage people to share the ‘#FriendBetter’ campaign, which is aimed at young people to increase their skills to respond to and support other young people in distress or who are going through a tough time.

‘#FriendBetter with RUOK?’ features short, easy-to-digest conversation guides that address the top life stressors for young people as identified in the research. These include motivation, financial, relationships, mental health and academic stresses. The campaign was developed with the expertise of advocates and valuable guidance of young people with lived experience.

“Our research shows that the young people in our world won’t always tell us they need support, so it’s up to us to make asking how they’re really going and offering our support a part of our everyday friendships,” said Katherine Newton, R U OK? CEO.

“Through ‘#FriendBetter with RUOK?’ we want to equip young people with the skills and confidence to ask the question, listen, and help a friend navigate life’s ups and downs, which happen to all of us.”

‘#FriendBetter with RUOK?’ was developed through generous support from ING Bank Australia.

For tips and tools on how to '#FriendBetter with R U OK?', visit ruok.org.au

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