City of Charlottetown launches youth retention survey

Dave Stewart dstewart@theguardian.pe.ca
Published on January 18, 2016

Charlottetown City Hall

The City of Charlottetown is looking for some insight into why some youth decide to stay in the city and why some leave.

The city’s Youth Retention Advisory Board, in partnership with Fusion Charlottetown, has launched a survey to try and find some answers.

“Young people contribute to the growth and re-vitalization of the communities they live in,” said Mayor Clifford Lee.

“Too often, we hear anecdotally that our young people are moving out of this province. We want to hear from them directly. We want to examine what we could do at the municipal level to help our youth reach their potential here, at home.”

The youth board was created by the mayor last year to engage youth and advise council on issues affecting youth. This survey is the first big initiative of the board.

“This survey was designed by youth for youth,” said Coun. Kevin Ramsay, chairman of the Youth Retention Advisory Board. “We’re trying to gain insight into why some youth decide to stay in Charlottetown and other youth decide to leave, but we also want to know what they enjoy in their communities and what they would like to see change.”

The distribution of the survey is being led by members of the board, including Haley Doherty, Zac Murphy, Drew MacEachern and Ryan Casey. It has been shared with students at both Charlottetown senior high schools, Holland College and UPEI, various youth oriented committees and organizations and is also available on the city’s website at: www.charlottetown.ca by clicking on the Youth Retention Survey button.

“Youth are an integral part of our community. We are engaged citizens who are committed to making positive contributions,” said Doherty. “We hope this survey will allow us to better understand what our peers enjoy about Charlottetown, and what they feel would encourage more youth to live and work here. This survey is the first step to ensure the voices of youth are heard in planning for the future of our city.”

The survey is targeted at people between the ages of 16 and 30. It is anonymous, and touches on topics such as employment, health and wellness, recreation, housing, and the arts. Once the survey is completed, the information will be compiled and presented to the Board to make recommendations to Council.

The deadline to fill out the survey is Friday, Feb. 5.