April 22, 2020


New survey reveals mental health is the biggest concern for young people in the face of covid-19

A new survey, conducted by The Diana Award to meet the emerging needs of young during the COVID-19 crisis, reveals 85% of young people and 98% of staff working with young people say mental health is a high priority.

The lockdown has resulted in an increased exposure online with young people at home, away from school and their peers.

In light of this new context, these stats show that 80% of young people are concerned about staying safe online. In addition 73% of school staff report that family relationships are a high priority – particularly for those facing challenges or with special education needs.

Despite these findings, nearly three quarters (70%) of young people are more engaged than ever with social and community action saying it’s a high priority for them.

As a result of these findings The Diana Award is collaborating across their Award & Development, Anti-Bullying and Mentoring programmes to adapt their services.

“These findings show the urgent needs from young people, who, like the rest of society, are facing monumental changes in their lives. In the long-term they are likely to be the biggest victims of this crisis. Supporting them through a range of services, including those offered by The Diana Award, will be critical now and in the future to ensure they are not neglected. Across all surveyed, 91% said they would find our services helpful at this time.”

Tessy Ojo, Chief Executive of The Diana Award

About the survey:

Between 27 March – 5 April 2020, The Diana Award surveyed young people and staff leads from our schools-based Anti-Bullying and Mentoring Programmes. We received 208 responses. We estimate that the responses from staff leads reflect the interests of at least 1500 young people who are supported by them.

To download and read the full report click here.


New survey shows 41% of young people feel more anxious in lockdown and highlights importance of promoting positive peer relationships when schools reopen.

An initial survey conducted by The Diana Award at the beginning of lockdown revealed young people and educators felt mental health would be a high priority. Now, a new survey confirms the need to focus on protecting youth mental health.

Young people were asked directly about their experiences of lockdown and feelings about returning to school.

41% of the young people in this sample experienced more feelings of anxiety, upset and worry during lockdown.

Overall, they feel excited about returning to school, to see their friends who they’ve been missing, and regain some normality over their education during this time of high uncertainty.

But many are concerned about the negative impact on their education and are worried about how friendships will change with the time apart and new social distancing measures.

Most still feel socially connected, but 1 in 5 no longer feel close to their friends.

Despite all their serious concerns, many shared with us all the creative ways in which they’ve been building connections with their family, friends and communities, demonstrating, as always, their role as positive change-makers in society.

The Diana Award urges the education and youth sectors to prioritise youth mental health in the recovery from COVID-19, to pay attention to young people’s anxieties around school reopening, and to empower young people to build the lasting, positive peer connections with each other that they need and value so much.

About the survey:

Between 30th April and 22nd May, The Diana Award surveyed students at our Anti-Bullying Ambassador Programme partner schools. We received responses from 505 young people, across 13 schools in England and Wales. These results represent a snapshot of the experiences of some young people during this time.

To download and read the full report click here.

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