A unique collaboration of young people, carried out by youth from over 70 countries, with the support of UNESCO, reveals the extent of the impact of COVID-19 on young people around the world. Around 10,000 young people were surveyed as part of the 'Youth as Researchers' project and described the impact of the pandemic on areas such as mental health, community action, and education.
According to a statement by UNESCO, following a competitive process, two Arab teams were formed. The first team explored the various forms of digital and civic action undertaken by Arab youth, who manage to find ways to navigate and reinvent a different sense of community during the pandemic. The second team studied the factors that affect the successful implementation of online learning in Arab universities during the COVID-19 pandemic while highlighting how this transformation affects learning and students’ well-being.
41% of respondents from the Arab States region said that their level of understanding of coursework has declined, and 38% of students reported that their class attendance and participation have declined with online classes.
61 % of Arab youth respondents reported being more active civically on the ground with their local communities during the pandemic than digitally (44%), with some distinctions across sub-regions and countries. Male respondents reported a greater percentage engaging in civil activities compared to females, suggesting societal pressures on females as home-based caregivers. This is further evidenced by a higher share of females (55%) reporting feeling overwhelmed with household tasks during the pandemic.
Now, at a meeting in Paris on 25 March 2022, UNESCO's young researchers will meet and work with government ministers and other senior officials from across the globe to address pressing issues such as misinformation online, the challenges of remote learning, and mental wellbeing, and to propose a concrete solution.