According to UNICEF’s The State of the World's Children 2021 report, the harmful effects of COVID-19 on the mental health and wellbeing of children is only the “tip of the iceberg.”
The report states that globally, over one in seven children aged 10–17 suffers from a mental illness, with disorders in young people leading to estimated losses in terms of contribution to economies of nearly $390 billion a year.
Save the Children Finland (Pelastakaa Lapset) has also said that the prolonged pandemic has weakened the financial situation of families with children in Finland, resulting in a high demand for food aid.
UNICEF: COVID-19 pandemic could have long-lasting impact on children’s mental health
A new report from UNICEF indicates that the COVID-19 crisis has worsened mental illness among children and adolescents, and its impact on their wellbeing could be felt for years to come.
According to the study, titled The State of the World’s Children 2021; On My Mind: promoting, protecting and caring for children’s mental health, no significant effort was made to address mental health conditions in children even before the pandemic, as governments across the globe allocate only around 2 percent of their health budget to mental health spending.
With nearly 46,000 adolescents dying from suicide every year, the report calls for governments as well as institutions to invest in improving mental healthcare for children, adolescents and caregivers, especially those in vulnerable populations.
IL: COVID-19 crisis has worsened the financial situation of families with children
Iltalehti reports that the ongoing pandemic has led to a number of families, particularly those with children, suffering from long-term financial problems due to lay-offs, unemployment and other challenges.
Children’s rights group Save the Children Finland has allegedly had to contend with a significantly high demand for food aid. The organisation has already provided over a million euros worth of provisions to families with children, which has reportedly been used to help more than 10,000 families and almost 27,000 children.