New research released by headspace shows the impact of COVID-19 on young Australians

Posted 8th July 2020 in Research General

headspace has released new research highlighting that young Australians are fearful and uncertain for their future as a result of COVID-19.

A national survey of 2,208 young people aged 15-25, and 2,164 parents of young people aged 12-25 conducted during the height of the COVID-19 lockdown revealed that 40% of young respondents felt that the pandemic had impacted their confidence to achieve future goals. Young women were more likely to feel this way (43%) than young men (38%).

Research also found that half of all respondents felt their mental health had gotten worse during this period (51%).

The survey results revealed significant discrepancies between how much parents believe their young peoples’ lives are impacted as a result of COVID-19 and what young people are actually saying themselves. This disconnect reminds us that it is important for parents to check in with their young person to understand what’s effecting them in this current environment.

When asked about the negative impacts of COVID-19, parents emphasised negatives that were not as keenly felt by the young people. Parents felt that their young person’s participation in sport (62% vs. 46%), exercise and physical activity (49% vs. 38%) and their general routine (58% vs. 48%) were all negatively impacted. Conversely, half of all young people felt the pandemic had negatively impacted their interactions with friends (56%), their study situation (53%), their routine (48%) and their mood (47%).

Despite adapting to major changes in the way they live, study and work, young people are not seeking help, with one in five saying they need support for their mental health, but are not following through to access it.

As a result of the data, headspace has launched their new digital awareness campaign - together, we’ve got this - to support the mental health of young people and their parents as we move through the COVID-19 pandemic and period of significant change. 

The campaign aims to increase the mental health literacy of young people and their parents by:

  • Acknowledging how COVID-19 has changed lives and the impact on the mental health of young people
  • Providing proven tips and tools on how young people and parents can build a healthy headspace as they move through COVID-19
  • Raising awareness of services available to young people e.g. headspace website/account and the headspace Work & Study service to assist young people who may be seeking support in their job search journey.

For more information visit:

  • headspace.org.au/tips - for young people
  • headspace.org.au/parents - for parents or carers
  • headspace.org.au/sewb - for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people
  • headspace.org.au/workandstudy - work and study support