ABC Friends NewGen Initiative

Future-proofing the ABC

The Challenge

In 2020 ABC Friends Vic commissioned the ABC Youth Engagement Research Project undertaken by La Trobe University postgraduate students.

Of the 705 participants across the 18-34 year-old age groups, both rural and urban, key findings highlight:

  • While the ABC is generally valued, this demographic is largely unaware of who funds the ABC and the importance of independent public broadcasting;
  • Over 80% of this cohort stay up to date with news and current affairs via social media;
  • Only 41% say that they trust the ABC most for news/current affairs – only 28% of the 16–19-year-old cohort trust the ABC (compared to 46% in the 30-34 year-old cohort, and over 70% for the general population).

The long-term future of Australian democracy depends on a strong ABC

The Response

These research results raise concerns about support for the ABC in the future, and present a challenge for ABC Friends in its role of raising awareness of the ABC and the importance of public broadcasting.

The NewGen initiative is our response. We aim to build a new generation of champions prepared to mobilise to protect the ABC’s independence and funding.

To date we have implemented a range of strategies including the appointment of a youth engagement and social media officer, projects with universities, an essay competition and secondary school debates.

We intend to establish a NewGen Reference Group and appoint a committed young leader to drive the initiative forward.

The next generation of leaders and citizens must continue to protect independent broadcasting and idgital media.

The Request

ABC Friends need resources to build the team to implement this multi-year initiative.

We are seeking funding partners and sponsors who care about future-proofing the ABC for the next generation.

If you wish to become involved or discuss this further, please contact:

The ABC needs a new generation of champions.