Survey Finds 4 in 10 Young People Volunteer in the UK
Young people, like 17 year old Devan Witter, just want to help other people. On his own website, Devan is supporting people who are being bullied, drawing from his own experiences. He also speaks at local schools and works with his local police, doing what he can to help people.
And he’s not the only one. A survey by Ipsos Mori in November 2014, found that 4 out of 10 young people had been involved in meaningful social action over the last year, often in their local communities, with activities such as fundraising, volunteering for charities, and directly helping those in need.
They also found that over 70% of them identified that they got enjoyment from helping others, and rate their life as more satisfying than those who haven’t taken part in such action.
The survey was carried out for the anniversary of the #iwill campaign launched in 2013, for which Devan Witter is an ambassador. The campaign aims to have over half of all young people engaged in social action by 2020.
Already, 3 million young people are finding out how good it feels to help, and their communities, national charities, and even international organisations, are benefiting from the charitable and helpful intentions of people so early in their lives.
Other young people involved directly with the #iwill campaign include Jordan Caldwell, who works on raising awareness around eating disorders; Hannah Palmer-Davis, who works with the NHS to help young people anonymously seek medical information and advice; and Sarah Shaikh, who is committed to supporting young people’s mental health by supporting people online, and signposting them to further services.
HRH The Prince of Wales, a Patron of Step Up To Serve and the #iwill campaign, met some of the young people involved in social action across the UK via his first ever Google+ Hangout.
Hosted by Alex Jones from the BBC’s One Show, the 30 minute Google+ Hangout gave The Prince of Wales an opportunity to talk publicly with a group of young people about their experiences of social action, with a focus on how they are using technology to help others.
Step Up To Serve, the organisation behind the #iwill campaign, are looking for more ways to help young people get involved. The survey identified that even more of them would be taking part if they had better access to opportunities, and higher levels of support from family and friends.
Given the clear desire from so many young people to help others, the aim is to make social action a normal and simple part of any young person’s education and experience, giving them the best chance to develop into, confident, compassionate and socially engaged adults.