The results were presented on Tuesday during a meeting of the Parliament`s Labor Committee. Results also show that the emotional state of Cypriot youth following the outbreak of the pandemic, is overrun with negative feelings. Anxiety/stress is a feeling that prevails in 46% of young people. Combined with 28% who say they feel insecure/precarious and 10% who say they are concerned; a severe state of uncertainty seems to prevail among young people.
Findings indicate that 32% of the participants are seriously concerned about social inequality in society, such as the existence of social stereotypes and prejudices , combined with economic issues (14%), the general lack of good prospects (9%), and the high cost of living (8%).
The overall level of satisfaction as regards life satisfaction shows a slight increase, compared to the previous study (70% were very or quite satisfied compared to 64% of the participants) which was carried out while strict restrictive measures were in place (local and universal lockdown). However, the percentage remains significantly lower compared to the first study (85%), which was conducted before the outbreak of the pandemic.
The survey shows that restrictive measures and social isolation due to the pandemic affected the psychological state of young people. Specifically, 34% state that they feel monotony/boredom/apathy, and 17% state that they feel lonely.
Negative emotions are observed in lower percentages, as 15% state that they feel distress/despair, 14% are afraid, 11% describe the feeling they experience as depression, and 9% state that they feel anger/rage.
In terms of their mental health, in particular, 57% of young people say they have been badly affected. There is a significant difference between genders, as women have increased rates (61%), compared to men (53%). In terms of age, among juveniles (14-17 years old) there is the highest percentage of people who report that their lives have been badly affected (71%).
The need for psychological support was felt by 38% of young people. Of these, the majority (64%) turned to acquaintances and friends for psychological support, while 43% of young people sought support from family, specifically their parents. Only 2 out of 10 young people, who felt the need for psychological support, were referred to mental health professionals, while the findings show that 1 in 10 of them did not ask for any help.
Among the biggest challenges faced regarding the effects of the pandemic are issues related to measures put in place in order to reduce the spread of the disease, such as restrictions on transportation (33%), the demonstration of Safe Pass (25%), the mandatory mask use (23%) and the general feeling of restricting human rights (12%).
Difficulty (to a great extent or somewhat) in adapting education/work to the new conditions brought about by the coronavirus pandemic, seems to have been encountered by 63% of young people. Difficulties, in adapting to the use of new technologies are reported by 33% of young people.
Attending work and classes with a physical presence is preferred by the vast majority (82%) of young people. The highest level of preference for physical presence occurs among young people between ages 14-17 (96%), while the lowest was reported among people aged 30-35 years (76%).
As regards the interest in Politics, the study shows that majority of the participants (67%) have little or no interest in politics.
This percentage does not show a statistically significant difference from the previous studies (65% in the 2nd Neo-Barometer and 68% in the 1st Neo-Barometer).
Young people seem to be more optimistic about the future compared to the previous survey, as 80% say they are very or quite optimistic.
Professional recognition is the goal that prevails for the next five years in 61% of young people. The successful completion of their studies is expected by 31%, while 22% seek financial independence.
The data collection process took place in July and August of 2021, in nationwide coverage, both in urban and rural areas.
The research involved 1, 000 young people aged 14-35. The sample was selected using the random stratified sampling technique.
Data collection was performed by telephone, online and in-person interviews using a structured questionnaire.