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Havas Group survey: Two-thirds of South Africans find being young in Covid-19 times harder

According to this global survey, conducted by Havas Group in partnership with Market Probe International, changes are overdue. And the global Covid-19 pandemic and the Gen Zs and younger millennials greatly impacted by it may be key to initiating these changes.
  • 60% felt lonelier during this pandemic than ever before
  • The biggest struggle for people has been finding a job
  • 90% of youth say they have had to make significant sacrifices due to the Covid-19 pandemic

Havas Group survey: Two-thirds of South Africans find being young in Covid-19 times harder

The survey had 17,500 people of 18 years and older in 32 markets, including South Africa, participating.

The objective was to better understand how Covid-19 and its related challenges such as lockdowns, travel restrictions, school closures, remote learning, and economic downturns have affected people’s behaviours, attitudes, and sense of what the future holds.

According to Havas South Africa, the results of the survey were not unexpected because the pandemic has a negative effect on our mental, physical, and financial health.

Due to Covid-19, people have missed out on opportunities to hustle and experience life which has led to 60% of people feeling lonelier during the pandemic. More than half of them said the greatest hardship has been the struggle to secure employment.

“This situation is a paradox because unemployment makes it even more challenging for the youth to experience an independent life they had expected, as young people, before the pandemic,” says Vineel Agarwal, Havas South Africa CEO.

For the older generation, 38% of the 35 to 54 age group have stated that struggling to find a job has been their biggest challenge during the pandemic. In comparison, the lack of social experiences was not as significant a contributor in the elderly generation.

Two-thirds of young people declare that it is harder to be 20 years old today than it was 20 years ago. Similarly, a majority of those aged 34 to 54 concur with the youth.

Ninety percent of youth believe that they have had to make sacrifices because of Covid-19. In addition to this, over half of younger people state that society has been focused so much on protecting the elderly that young people were deprioritised, leading to resentment amongst the younger population.

On a positive note, we see 78% of people are planning to live their lives to the fullest and on their own terms post the pandemic. In reference to how our world will look post the pandemic, 76% of those in the 18 to 34 age group, 83% in 35 to 54, and 80% of those 55 years old and over believe things will be starkly different.

Agarwal concludes, “Considering that 9 in 10 people believe the worst thing about Covid-19 is not knowing when it will end, it becomes increasingly important for private and public sectors to adapt to people’s changing behaviours and needs. Even more important, especially for us employers, is to re-build a structure that provides safety, future security while allowing employees to be creative and grow professionally and personally.”

With or without an end in sight, being able to check in with those around us and self-reflect is crucial, whether it is through a survey such as this one or on a more personal basis.

Havas Johannesburg
Havas Worldwide Johannesburg thrives on creative business ideas, proudly flipping the conventional advertising agency on its head. Our specialisation is world first, creative communication, that's designed to build meaningful connections between brand and consumers.

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