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Coronavirus drives down life satisfaction among young Koreans

All News 09:00 August 15, 2020

SEOUL, Aug. 15 (Yonhap) -- Life satisfaction has fallen sharply among young South Koreans in the aftermath of the coronavirus outbreak, a survey showed Saturday.

According to the poll of 1,055 youths nationwide conducted from July 1-21 by the Korea Youth Foundation, their life satisfaction index turned out to be 4.14 points on a 1 to 10 scale, marking a sharp fall from 6.41 tallied prior to the outbreak of COVID-19.

The survey results were disclosed by a group of ruling and opposition lawmakers during a public forum on youth life at the National Assembly earlier this week.

Asked about their biggest concerns amidst the pandemic, 304, or 29.3 percent, of the respondents cited "uncertainties about their studies and future," while 264, or 25.5 percent, complained of feeling constrained due to a lack of outdoor activities.

Another 250 youths, or 24.1 percent, said they are restless at being unable to know when the pandemic will end.

Meanwhile, the survey found that 685 students think a "healthy and happy life" is the most important aspect of the post-coronavirus era.

"Teenagers are feeling constraint, anxiety, depression, concerns and fear because of the coronavirus," an official at the foundation said, explaining the need to develop a program to relieve stress among students.

"The local community should provide adequate educational service to the teenagers as they are more concerned about their future and studies due to suspensions and the switch to online classes amid the pandemic."

In South Korea, more schools are considering in-person instruction for the upcoming fall semester, but concerns remain as new cases of virus infection have recently broken out among students.

Students arrive at a middle school in Seoul on June 8, 2020, when South Korea implemented the fourth phase of school reopening for middle school first graders and elementary school fifth and sixth graders. (Yonhap)


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