Investing in a Youth-Centered Recovery for Our Province
In mid-March 2020, COVID-19 cases ramped up in Newfoundland and Labrador and the province braced itself for a shut-down. Within days we saw businesses close, people being laid off, and community agencies pivoting to meet the changing needs of more and more vulnerable people. Amidst an existing provincial economic downturn, it quickly became clear that the impact of COVID-19 on the lives of Newfoundlanders and Labradorians would be unprecedented.
Early in the pandemic, we also began hearing that young people were afraid of being left behind as schools turned to online learning, volunteer opportunities dried up, and the future of youth employment became more and more uncertain. Prior to COVID-19, youth were three times as likely to be unemployed compared to older adults (International Labour Organization, 2020). Did COVID-19 exacerbate this? How are youth coping? What support do they need? These are just a few of the questions that this consultation process tried to answer.
The Forward Together report, offers insights to these questions by drawing on the expertise and experiences of young people in our province; and offers a youth-centred framework for investing in our province's recovery.
Capturing the voices of 486 young people across Newfoundland and Labrador (NL), this report details what we heard from youth, including the extent and significance of the challenges they are facing. The report also offers ideas and solutions that emerged from our dialogue as a resource to help individuals, agencies, governments, secondary and post-secondary institutions who are positioned to act on these findings.
To help launch this report, CFY was joined by a panel of youth with diverse backgrounds and experiences. Watch the recorded panel session below which includes their perspectives on the findings and the path ahead.
Brandy Goodland, Participant, Choices for Youth Momma Moments Program
Colton Purchase, Coordinator, Choices for Youth Youth Leadership Council
Zarin Tasnim, International Student, Bachelor of Engineering, Mechanical
Amelia Jones, Student, Bachelor of Science, Behavioural Neuroscience/Biology*
*Amelia was unable the join the panel and sent along some remarks by video. Click here for Amelia's video.
To learn more about this work, contact Jen Crowe, Strategic Initiatives Coordinator.