Young people's future health inquiry Aiming to build the policy, research and place-based agenda to improve the future health of today’s young people


Latest from the inquiry: the action phase

We have now launched the action phase of the Young people’s future health inquiry, which aims to build the policy, research and place-based agenda so that it recognises the ages of 12–24 as significant for health in the long term. 

In 2020 and 2021, we are scoping a new research programme to understand the emotional support that families provide to this age group, and the influences of wider factors on this.

Between 2020 and 2023 the Health Foundation is funding five policy posts across a range of organisations to build the policy agenda and amplify the voices of young people. Each post will explore one of the important topics that emerged in the listening phase of the inquiry.

The policy posts will work within their organisations to develop and test policy ideas, along with working with stakeholders in their sector. The Health Foundation will also be supporting the group to work with each other, sharing their ideas and what they have learnt to strengthen the policy agenda further.


Young people's future health: five policy posts


We're funding five policy posts across a range of organisations to build the policy agenda and...

The inquiry so far

The Health Foundation commissioned Kantar Public, an independent social research agency, which partnered with Livity, a youth engagement specialist, to conduct an engagement exercise with young people living in the UK aged 22–26. The aim was to discover the factors that helped or hindered them in their transition to adulthood.

We went to five UK towns and cities and listened to the perspectives of young people and youth organisations about access to the assets needed for a healthy transition into adulthood. Our visits uncovered common themes and a strong sense of place, shaping the young people’s identity and how they described themselves.

Our final report brings together all of the learnings from the Inquiry, exploring the factors that are putting the UK’s 12-24 year-olds at risk of ill-health later in life, and introducing the policy analysis that has taken place. As part of this, we also commissioned nine expert partner organisations to publish their recommendations for young people’s needs to be put at the centre of government policy making, focusing in seven policy areas.

We commissioned with the Association of Young People’s Health and UCL’s Institute of Child Health to carry out research that would inform the Inquiry’s analysis. We published four working papers:



A healthy foundation for the future

October 2019

The final report from the Young people's future health inquiry, bringing together all of the...

Learning report

A place to grow

December 2018
Learning report

The second report from the Young people’s future health inquiry, exploring site visits with young...

Learning report

Listening to our future

June 2018
Learning report

The first report from the Young people's future health inquiry, sharing the learnings from our early...

Blogs and long reads


The importance of emotional support for young people's health and wellbeing

15 June 2021

Better understanding is needed of the role that emotional support from families plays in young...

Long read

Generation COVID-19

30 August 2020

About 13 mins to read

Long read

The pandemic has highlighted existing inequalities and new challenges for young people. Our analysis...

Newsletter blog

Who would want to be 20 in 2020?

27 August 2020
Newsletter blog

Our Director of Health, Jo Bibby, looks at the experience of coronavirus through the eyes of young...

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Why we can't let COVID-19 compromise young people's future health

External link

Martina Kane writes for Children & Young People Now.

Newsletter blog

A terrible time for teens? – worrying messages from Michael Marmot for today’s young people

26 February 2020
Newsletter blog

Martina Kane writes about the teenage boys who live down the road from her, and wonders, will they...



Watch: Young people's future health inquiry


Watch our animation to find out what building blocks are needed for a healthy future.


Watch: How has the pandemic impacted young people in the UK?


Six young people share their experiences of how they've been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Press releases

Press release

Young people say their prospects are dwindling and wellbeing suffering in the wake of the pandemic

24 August 2021
Press release

A survey of young people conducted by the Health Foundation has revealed the extent to which young...

Press release

Losing work at an early career stage can have damaging ramifications for lifetime incomes and long-term health

16 June 2020
Press release

Health Foundation response to ONS UK labour market data.

Press release

We cannot let young people down by failing to give them essential building blocks for a healthy future

11 June 2020
Press release

Health Foundation response to the Social Mobility Commission report about the government's social...

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