Youth has always been regarded to be the nicest period of human lives. It is the period when young people can be carefree without the burden of responsibility which brings the parenthood or daily winning of ones bread. But youth, seemingly a free time of life, also brings some specific problems.
It is the period of life when people make the most important decisions that can have fatal consequences for their future family and career. These decisions, and also the difficult period of early parenthood or professional career, following abruptly the carefree period of early youth, demands personal maturity.
Policies affecting young people cover a wide range of activities from education, health and housing to employment, criminal justice and participation in public life. This means an increasingly important role for youth policy within mainstream politics which requires a more integrated approach to the needs of young people, intensified contact with youth organizations and further involvement in practical activities such as youth work, non-formal approaches to education, volunteering and development.
Pressing social problems such as racism, unemployment, unhealthy lifestyles, intolerance, discrimination against minorities, gender inequality and lack of integration for people with disabilities pose significant challenges both for the present and the next generation.
In Europe today, millions of young people suffer human rights violations which are increasingly related to economic, social and cultural, rather than political issues. Sadly, young people (and children) are more likely to be affected by poverty and other results of the high unemployment levels and social difficulties, than adults. The link between poverty among youngsters and crime is a basic discovery of social sciences, so combating poverty of young people can reduce crime rates as well.
The problems of young people reflect the problems of society as a whole, but these are more striking, as young people are more vulnerable, given that they are more dependent. To many it might think that youth itself is a problem but it is better and more fruitful to see young people as a solution to a problem, as an asset and base on which the societies of the future can be built.
That is why it is important to concentrate on the youth organizations and their activities and to try to figure out how it might serve the honorable purpose of building up a new society.
Table of Contents
Chapter 1. Youth Problems in Great Britain 5
1.1 Overview 5
1.2 Crime, Drugs and Alcohol 5
1.3 Unemployment 8
Chapter 2. Youth Movement in Great Britain 10
2.1 Student Activism 11
2.2 British Youth Counsil 12
2.3 Youth in Politics 14
2.4 Other Youth Organizations 16
Chapter 3. Youth Movement in Russia compared to those in Great Britain 20
Appendix 1 27
Questions on Youth Problems and Youth Movement
in Great Britain and Russia
1. Baldi, Gregory. The Politics of Youth Unemployment in France, Germany, and the United Kingdom. Georgetown University 2008
2. Beniart, Sarah; Anderson, Barry; Lee, Stephanie; Utting, David. A national survey of problem behavior and associated risk and protective factors among young people. 2002 published by the Joseph Rowntree Foundation
3. Chawla, L. (2002) Growing Up in an Urbanizing World. Paris/London: Earthscan/UNESCO Publishing
4. Child poverty in perspective: An overview of child well-being in rich countries. A comprehensive assessment of the lives and well-being of children and adolescents in the economically advanced nations. UNICEF Innocenti Research Centre. Report Card 7, 2007
5. Green, Catherine (1986). In the Service of Youth: A History of the National Council for Voluntary Youth Services 19361986, NCVYS:Leicester
6. How the Young Poor Measure Poverty in Britain: Drink, Drugs and Their Time in Jail. The New York Times, March 10, 2007
7. Jeffs, Tony, Smith, Mark K. (1999) The problem of youth for youth work, Youth and Policy 62, pages 45 66
8. Lyall, Sarah. Poor youth on the streets of Britain Teenagers pass their time outside the home, often drunk. International Herald Tribune. March 12, 2007.
9. NCVYS mission, aims and values, NCVYS
10. Savina E. Young Russia is changing its orientation. Kommersant, № 44 (3861), March 2008
11. Scouting for Boys. The Scout Association. 1998
12. Smith, P. H. J. (2007) Student revolution in 1960s Britain: Myth or reality?
13. The Freechild Project, Worldwide Youth Movement, official website
14. The young ones: Is this the future of politics? The Independent, June 2009
15. "UK Youth Parliament Scoops Another Award!" UK Youth Parliament, June 2008
Questions on Youth Problems and Youth Movement in Great Britain and Russia
1. What are the most common problems British youth has to face? Are they different or the same as Russian youth is facing nowadays?
2. What is pedophobia? Why is this social phenomenon so relevant in Great Britain now? Do we have something of the same kind in Russia?
3. Why do you think is the youth unemployment rate so high in Great Britain and in Russia?
4. What are three main forms of youth activism? Give examples of youth organizations of each form in Great Britain? In Russia?
5. What are the issues National Union of Students has to deal with?
6. What is the aim of National Youth Council? Do we have such an organization in Russia? Do we need it?
7. Youth in politics. Is it good or bad? What are the main differences between Russian and British youth political organizations? Which does appeal more to you?
8. What is the concept of scouting? Is it the same in Russia and in Great Britain?
9. Which experiences of British youth movement could be used in Russia to promote the youth, give youth the voice?
10. Religious organizations for youth in Great Britain and in Russia. What should be their main aims? Do we need such an organization in Russia?