A new survey has revealed that young people in Blackpool are more concerned about their mental health or self-harm than the risks posed by drugs.
Healthwatch Blackpool has published a report that captures the views of over 3,600 young people around their health and wellbeing.
The report comes as part of a six-month-long project undertaken by Healthwatch Blackpool working alongside Healthwatch Lancashire, to ensure young people had the opportunity to voice their views of health and wellbeing services in their community.
Results show the biggest worries for young people are:
• Experiencing a mental health condition;
• Concerns about their self-image;
• Taking drugs.
Young people told Healthwatch Blackpool that spending time with their family helped them to stay happy and healthy.
Recommendations from young people included the availability of additional, higher standard of mental health services; to be taken seriously by health services at school or college; and to have better access to health information and advice, such as how to find a therapist or getting information on eating disorders.
The project saw staff and volunteers from Healthwatch Blackpool and Healthwatch Lancashire engaging with 3,614 young people in a variety of settings and groups including venues where young people congregated and visiting young people’s forums and local colleges.
Sheralee Turner-Birchall, Engagement Manager at Healthwatch Blackpool, said: “Healthwatch Blackpool is here to make sure all people in our communities are listened to and this project amplifies the voice of our young people. This report identifies areas where health services, or access to these services, can be improved for our young people.
“We will be sharing our report with the decision makers and encourage the providers and commissioners to work more closely with young people where there is the need to design and/or improve services for them.”
The full report ‘Young People Have Their Say’ can be read and downloaded online at https://healthwatchblackpool.co.uk/reports/read-our-reports/