Young people are not immune to concerns and worries about world events
There is a huge amount of activity on the news these days, and whether it’s politics, international relations or the environment, very few people in the UK would go through an entire day without discussing current affairs.
Children and young people are far from immune to the worries the rest of us feel when watching the daily news. We hear from lots of young people every day who have concerns and questions about what is going on in the wider world.
One young person said: “I’m struggling at the moment with big concerns about the environment. It’s really upsetting and I feel like no matter what I try it won’t work.
“I’m writing to parliament, collecting signatures, writing to newspapers and contacting radios with ideas, but part of me still worries that it won’t be enough. I would love for people to give me more ideas on what else I can do.”
The things young people talk to us about vary hugely, depending on what is prominent in the news or on social media channels at any given time.
Sometimes these concerns can be about global issues, like terrorism, the environment or Brexit – but they can also be about individual stories that have a big emotional impact on a young person.
Whatever it is a young person is concerned about, there are things parents and carers can do to help them feel better about current affairs.
The first of these is to talk about what is upsetting or concerning them. It is important to let them know that you are listening to their worries, and that you take their concerns seriously.
You can also help them find out more about what’s happening – there is a lot of information available online, but not all of it is reliable. This would be a good opportunity to look at information around the issue, and help them understand that not everything they read should be accepted at face value.
It’s also a good idea for young people to be able to feel like they are taking something negative and doing something positive to combat this. This can include writing to their MP or speaking to their peers about the issues they care about.
If they are looking for more support, they can always speak to our Childline counsellors or chat on our message boards.
For free confidential advice and support about any worries, children and young people can contact Childline on 0800 1111 or www.childline.org.uk