Ministry for Gozo finances study on youths in Gozo
Details from a study on Gozitan youths were given during a conference which was organised by the OASI foundation, a non Governmental Organisation helping youths with drugs and alcohol problems whilst also working on a prevention programme. Young People in Gozo – Study (2) is a detailed study which will update a similar study conducted ten years ago, whilst also giving a wider picture on today’s Gozitan youths. The study was carried out through a range of questions addressed to more than 300 youths aged between 10 and 30.
This study was conducted by Dr Andrew Azzopardi, lecturer at the Youth and Community Studies Department within the University of Malta with the aim of analysing, suggesting, proposing and planning strategies on the basis of which future actions can be taken to the benefit of these youths. Research themes were related primarily to the aspirations and challenges faced by Gozitan youths in several fields such as social integration, employemnt, culture, media, entertainment, social change, confrontation to challenges, dependence on alcohol, smoking, drugs and other addictions.
During the inauguration of this study, the Hon. Giovanna Debono, Minister for Gozo explained how the aims of this study are in line with a main component of the eco-Gozo vision, which seeks to attain the sustainable development of the island in various socio-economic sectors. “The eco-Gozo action plan includes initiatives which enhance the economic development without leaving a negative impact on the island’s natural environment or the individual. This helps also in achieving the social progress which strengthens communities and results in a better quality of life” stated the Minister for Gozo. Such reasoning led to the approval of this project under the scheme issued by the Ministry for Gozo for Non Governmental Organisations. OASI foundation is one of 37 Non Governmental organisations which are implementing a total of 38 different projects that address one or more measures listed in the eco-Gozo action plan 2010-2012.
The study was launched during aconference led by Ryan Mercieca, President of the Gozo University Group which was also addressed by Fr. Emanuel Cordina, Director General of the OASI Foundation. During a short presentation, Dr Andrew Azzopardi explained how this scientific study involved an extensive research which was conducted in collaboration with the Ministry for Gozo, the OASI Foundation, and the Department for Youth and Community within the University of Malta.
He explained how this study has shown that Gozitan youths are similar to Maltese youths while at the same time are very keen on their origins.