Economic Situation and Young People
by Sean Marston, Champion for Youth and Young Adults
20 May 2009
I think we are all facing the realities of the struggling economic situation around the world. To me one of the interesting things is that often young people in the Western world have had many of the things they wanted in life and their world has been so different from young people in the majority world.
The issues young people face around the world are similar—education, relationships, parents, career, acceptance, value etc.—but for many young people in the majority world, lack of money places an even larger struggle over the top of all these things. At the same time, young people in the Western world can get caught up in issues that really aren’t even that important because money has blurred their perception of reality.
I recently watched this video about a group of students in California who were sharing their experiences of what the economic situation was doing to them and their families. I want to encourage you to watch "Is Anybody Listening?" if you can.
I was quite moved as each young person shared their fears, pain, and doubts about the future and what was happening to their families. But I also saw them as they had to deal with the realities of what young people in poorer parts of the world have to deal with everyday.
These young people didn’t have their head in the sand ... they wanted to get involved and help their families. They also understood the need to support one another and the word ‘community’ came up a few times. I wonder whether this economic situation can be a way of helping young people with plenty, help to connect with young people with little.
My view is that young people today are naturally more egalitarian—that is, they have a stronger desire to see everyone provided for. Sure they like their 'stuff,' but I think they are more aware of how things work in the world and maybe these economic times will help young people work out how we can make sure that life is just not about 'what I own' but about how people everywhere can have the basics in life.Comment on this post: Email email@example.com
Youth and Young Adults
Champion: Sean Marston
Sean Marston’s 22 years in youth ministry (part of that time as Short-Term Mission Coordinator for SIM New Zealand) have informed his passion for reaching those growing up in a “post-mission and post-church environment.”
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