South Korea paying youth R9k to rejoin society

South Korea paying youth R9k to rejoin society

Sometimes it takes more than money to incentivise youth...

Woman wearing a face mask on the subway
Woman wearing a face mask on the subway/Pexels

The critical difference between being alone and feeling alone is that one is a matter of choice and the other isn't. 

Many a time people who feel alone generally suffer from mental health issues. Sometimes these issues can be extreme, whilst other times not so much. 

But either way, it is of great importance for people who feel alone, secluded, or ostracised to be supported in some way. Sadly, that's not always the case. 

One country that is trying to change this script is South Korea. 

"South Korea is offering isolated young people $500 a month to get them to leave their homes and reconnect with society." (Business Insider)

$500 is equivalent to R9,150. And they are using that amount to incentivise youth who have retreated into coming out of that space of seclusion. 

"The new measure aims to encourage shut-in youths to return to school, look for jobs, and "restore their daily lives," the South Korean family ministry announced on Wednesday.

"Reclusive youths aged nine to 24 are eligible for the monthly allowance, the ministry said in its press release." (Business Insider)

According to the press release, approximately 338,000 people between the ages 19 and 39 in Korea have become "hermit-type loners". Many of the youth come from poorer families and start isolating themselves from society due to bullying, personal trauma, conflict with family, and even academic stress.

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"The authorities are now concerned that prolonged physical isolation might make these youths prone to depression and stunt their physical growth because of their irregular lifestyles and lack of nutrition." (Business Insider)

This is a means for the authorities to tackle the potential decline in their workforce, not to mention the rising rate of depression. 

And as much as it may seem like a nice way of getting money, it is much, much deeper than that. In a way, it is really inspiring to see a country like South Korea using funds to help its youth come out of their pain and feel motivated by the means to assist. 

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