Sunderland youngsters feel left on the scrapheap

Prince's Trust new research. Young people unables to cope
Prince's Trust new research. Young people unables to cope
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YOUNGSTERS in Sunderland feel they have been left on the scrapheap and cannot cope with life, new research has revealed.

A report from the Prince’s Trust Youth Index revealed that 16 to 25 year-olds not in employment, education, or training (Neets) are significantly more likely to feel unable to cope than their peers.

Almost one in five of those from the North East who took part did not have someone to talk to about their problems.

“A frightening number of unemployed young people in the region feel unable to cope,” said Jonathan Townsend, regional director of The Prince’s Trust.

“It is particularly tough for those who don’t have a support network in place.

“We know at The Prince’s Trust that it is often those from the most vulnerable backgrounds who end up furthest from the job market.

“Life can become a demoralising downward spiral, from a challenging childhood into life as a jobless adult.”

According to the report, 23 per cent of young people in the region always or often feel down or depressed, which is higher among Neets.

Almost a third believe their prospects have been permanently damaged by the recession and more than one in five feel they have no future because of it.

The same amount believe their confidence will never recover from their time unemployed.

“These surveys paint a depressing picture of life for families in 2013,” said Sharon Hodgson, Washington and Sunderland West MP.

“Ministers should listen to the voice of those at the chalkface, who are seeing the impact of this Government’s policies on the lives and life chances of children and young people, such as increasing hunger and anxiety.

“It is also no surprise so many young people are stressed or depressed at a time when long-term youth unemployment is rocketing, and support for staying on in education has been slashed.”

Richard Parish, chief executive of the Royal Society of Public Health, said: “These unemployed young people need support to regain their self-worth and, get them back in the workplace.

“With recent record-breaking youth unemployment, the work of charities like The Prince’s Trust with vulnerable young people is more critical than ever.”

Mental health charity Headlight said Wearside youngsters in need had been going to its base in Mary Street.

Development manager at the charity Trisha Doyle, said: “Our out-of-hours service have seen a stream of young people come into the service who say they have no one to talk to and need help.”

Twitter: @Monica_Turnbull