Children of Queensland crave connection
A new report, released today by the Queensland Family and Child Commission (QFCC), has shown that children as young as four ‘crave face-to-face connections’.
The study,This Place I Call Home: the views of children and young people on Growing up in Queensland, looked at the views of more than 7,000 Queensland children and young people, aged four to eighteen, and found that they want one simple thing: to be heard.
Queensland Attorney-General Yvette D’Ath said children and young people from South East Queensland to as far north as the Torres Strait and west to Mt Isa and Longreach shared their views with the QFCC through a survey, focus groups, post-card questions and artwork.
They provided insights into:
- how they experience life in their community;
- their career aspirations and the supports and barriers they face to achieving their goals; and,
- the big picture topics and their ideas for possible improvements.
Despite differences in age, location, gender and cultural differences, the messages were the consistent, in what QFCC Principal Commissioner Cheryl Vardon has termed “a call to arms”.
“They want adults to pay attention, have respectful conversations, and listen to what they have to say about the things important to them — they’re asking adults to put their phones down and to interact with them more.”
The QFCC will use the findings to advocate for young Queenslanders and influence decision-makers to consider the views of young people when developing policy.
“There is a lot of criticism these days of our young people and their addiction to screens. But what they tell us is they’re being driven to everything digital — games for recreation, screens for education, websites for resources, but what they actually want is real conversations and connections.” Ms Vardon said.
The report is available at www.qfcc.qld.gov.au.