Prince Charles' fears for young people
Prince Charles has warned of the "potentially devastating" impact of coronavirus on young people and fears it will "define the prospects of a generation".
The 71-year-old prince believes it is essential to stop the global health crisis "from defining the prospects of a generation" as he's worried about a "terrible downward spiral" for those faced with the "double disaster" of both the pandemic and the long-term economic repercussions.
Charles warned it is young people who are often "hardest hit" in times of hardship, especially those working in industries which have "borne the brunt of this crisis".
After statistics showed unemployment between 18 to 24 year olds had doubled between March and May, Charles told his Prince's Trust organisation: "Young people now need your support more than ever. Their future is on the line.
"But together we can prevent this crisis from defining the prospects of a generation."
Charles sent his "heartfelt wishes" to young people amid the "deeply worrying" pandemic and suggested problems they will face now will be tougher than when he first established the Trust in 1976.
According to the Daily Telegraph newspaper, he said: "In times of economic hardship it is often young people who are hardest hit and we know that many under 25s work in sectors such as hospitality and tourism, which have borne the brunt of this crisis.
"We also know the difficulties faced by a disrupted education, the loss of entry level jobs, and rising unemployment.
"It is a real challenge to thrive in the midst of chaos and economic disorder. But this is why my trust was set up, to help people to a better future.
"I know only too well that youth unemployment can cause a terrible downward spiral, impacting mental health and leading to challenges such as low self-esteem, poverty, homelessness or worse."
"When I founded my Trust 44 years ago, the problems facing young people through unemployment and a lack of support were serious.
"Now, I fear, those problems have gone from serious to potentially devastating."
The prince is concerned the repercussions of the crisis will last for years.
He continued: "While there is much uncertainty about how the Covid-19 pandemic will progress, it is clear that the impact will be enormous and the recovery extremely challenging.
"Desperately high numbers of lives and livelihoods are being lost as this double disaster sweeps the globe.
"Although we all hope the pandemic will pass quickly, there are inevitable fears that the repercussions will be felt deeply by all of us for years to come.
"This challenge confronts us all and it is therefore vital that we share our experiences and co-ordinate our responses so that we can come back stronger."
The Prince believes supporters have "quite literally saved lives" with their contributions and hopes to support young adults to "gain the practical skills and confidence needed to help them into work, education, training and self-employment".
The Prince's Trust is currently running a job search board, a coronavirus support hub - which includes online training and support, as well as one-to-one calls- and a relief fund to help during the pandemic.