We are thrilled to launch our youth-led inquiry into the effects of climate change on young people’s health. This is the result of nearly two years of work! Since recruiting a group of amazing young people for our Youth Advisory Panel (YAP) back in summer 2020, we have been working with them to determine their biggest priorities for young people’s health. The issue that came up again and again was climate change and how it is impacting their physical, mental and social health.

The YAP members are diverse in terms of gender, ethnicity, geography and neurodiversity, but they are a small group so they decided that they needed to hear from more young people in the UK about their experiences of climate change.

What can you do?

  • Share this with young people or anyone who works with young people
  • Share on your social media
  • Support a young person or group of young people to respond

Who do we want to hear from?

We want to gather responses from young people (aged 10-25) who live all over the UK to find out how they are being impacted by climate change. We know that young people are not feeling these effects equally, either globally or within the UK, so we are particularly keen to hear from young people who are most impacted by climate change. 

How can you respond?

We have developed youth-friendly guidance and a simple form that young people can complete on their own or with a group of friends. We have also developed a discussion guide for adults and professionals to support groups of young people to contribute responses. We are accepting artwork, audio and video responses as well because we know some young people express themselves best through other media. We are collecting responses up until the end of August 2022.

How will young people’s responses be used?

The YAP will be hosting a live inquiry event in the autumn to bring together young people and adults concerned about these issues. When we surveyed our YAP members about what they thought the most important outcome of the inquiry was they unanimously chose: to influence policy and practice so professionals do more about climate change. The burden of both the impacts of climate change and the urgent need to fight it has unfairly fallen on young people. Although this inquiry is another form of youth-led action, the aim is to develop recommendations about how youth and health services can support them and work towards a better future for all young people.

In order to get the widest range of responses, we need everyone to share this with any young people, youth workers, teachers, etc. they know.