The Big Questions is our bi-annual survey for young people living in supported housing services within our membership. With it, we aim to reach as many young people from as many services as possible to ensure that every young person has an opportunity to be heard and to create change.
This most recent survey closed in November 2021. It gives us a snapshot of a time when many services had seen a big change in the make-up of their communities. The pandemic held up move-on accommodation for many young people at the end of their Foyer journey – those who tend to be more confident, engaged and involved. In summer and autumn, many of these young people moved on in a similar period, making space for new young people to move in. During November, many Foyers had a larger-then-normal proportion of residents at the start of their Foyer journey, usually lower in confidence and self-belief, and still building their relationships of trust with the service and staff. We believe that this is reflected in the findings.
Click the images below to download our two reports – one aimed at professionals and the other for young people. Three key takeaways from the survey are:
- Mental health is the number one priority for young people living in supported housing services. The percentage of young people expressing concern over this continues to rise. The Foyer Federation is looking into ways we can positively support in this area.
- Young people in general feel confident to – and know how to – make their voices heard in Foyers, but want to see change happen faster and more often. It’s encouraging that young people have the confidence to share their ideas as this highlights a culture of listening and the safe and supportive environment that staff have created. It also reminds us of the importance of closing feedback loops – letting young people know when there’s bad news or even no news so they’re not left wondering what’s happened to their suggestions.
- The majority of young people (85%) can identify at least one thing that makes them feel powerful. This is a really positive finding and encouraging for services seeking to grow young people’s power and leadership. Feeling power in yourself is a key foundation for people who can lead within their Foyer, wider community, friends and family, and even on the national stage. Finding where that feeling comes from with young people is a fantastic place to build from.