Vincent Black

The next generation…

We all know someone who is a millennium…maybe a son, daughter or you may have a niece or a nephew that fits into that category or younger. Having reflected on our future next generation, you can’t help not thinking about our youth and what may be in store for them in the coming years.

COVID-19 has got me thinking about our future generation and how they will be dealing with the issues, not only in this country, but what has been happening in this rapidly changing world of ours.

There is a generation that comprises more than one in seven people, who are influencing the purchasing power of their household and are key to the future, yet few people have heard of them. Within the next four years they will outnumber the baby boomers, and many of them will live to see the 22nd century. I’m talking about the next generation, the current generation of children who began being born in the year 2010. They are the children of the millennials, and often the younger siblings of future generations. This could be your kid’s children, or someone related to you, a friend or a neighbour, the true next generation.

The next generation-mundo-mileniostadium
Crédito: DR.

While it will be some time before we know the full extent of how COVID-19 will impact and shape this generation, the oldest of them turned 11 in 2020 so many of them will remember aspects of this global crisis. Over the last few months, many watched us cope with this pandemic and younger folk will wonder why we were doing many of the protocols of today’s virus. They might not know why we need to stay six feet away from other people, but they know that we should. To our future generation might look confusing today but will resonate in the future.

The most recent research shows that more than four in five adults believe COVID-19 will play a significant role in shaping the children of today. Specifically, it is the impact of technology being more integrated into their lives, online education, expectations of work in the future and their resilience where adults feel the greatest impacts will be felt.

In order for us to lead this next generation through a time of crisis, it is important that we understand them, their context and the world that is shaping them. We all need to do our part and work with these young people whether it’s in a small way or in a large impactful way.

Until you sit and think about it, this is so important to our kid’s future children and the impact they will have on this earth. Spending a bit of time with them and trying to mould someone is not only an important thing to do, but the universe will eventually thank you.

This worldwide pandemic has brought with its public health crisis, global economic upheaval and widespread uncertainty. Even though the acute threat of COVID-19 will pass, things will not return completely to normal. The virus and the economic tumult that accompanies it are transformative events and will likely change lifestyles and financial choices for every generation. If we want to prepare for what our world will look like when things settle – weeks, months or even years from now – it’s worth considering how our perspectives will change from this, and how each generation might live their lives differently.

For the COVID-19 generation, the return of overwhelming uncertainty cuts deeply in a cohort for whom anxiety and depression were already being described as a pandemic and in a context where mental health was a growing source of national disquiet. They might remember that feeling in their future – or it might not be mere memory. In 50 years, time, living with anxiety and uncertainty may be a normal part of the human experience, a consequence of the disruption and havoc of environmental degradation.

One thought that came to mind while l was writing this piece is that although there are lessons to be had, the one thing that l would point out to my millennium folks is that there are also many opportunities that could be had. The year 2020 and the start of 2021 has not been easy for today’s young people. Your education has been disrupted, you have been separated from your friends and family. You may have lost your job, or lost hope of finding work in uncertain economic times. But l am here to tell you … big changes are coming, and you need to be part of them. After the COVID-19 pandemic is over you need to get involved as you have a chance to do things differently, to use our knowledge to steer our shared future towards a positive change. You need to be part of this changing process.

In 2020 and 2021, we are witnessing the early development of the new generation. And whatever you may want to call this class, it is incumbent upon us all to educate and drive the will to continue to grow and take advantage of opportunity and to live life at its fullest.

It has been very difficult for many of us and the fight is still not done, but we must continue to forge ahead with conviction and strength so that our future generation is well equipped to handle the future. Regardless of what that future may look like, we need to be grateful.

Its not going to be easy for our next generation, battling global fights with China and other global entities, the effects will be felt, but hopefully we can continue to prepare our future for what may lie ahead. Good, bad or indifferent, regardless of what’s ahead for you… you must continue to be positive and take advantage of opportunity, both locally and abroad.

The one thing that l would say that has affected me the most and should you as well, especially our next generation…is that you… the next generation should realise that collectively you should understand that one’s daily existence can change overnight.

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