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Similarities in Challenges Facing Rural and Urban Youth

             Although many people seldom consider the similarities that rural and urban communities share, they exist. By reviewing literature and research that focus on problems of rural areas and problems of urban areas, one can find many parallel examples. Issues in education, health care, youth, economic development, environmental justice, and technology were researched and compared in the following review of literature. By becoming more fully aware of the challenges we face in building stronger communities, rural and urban leaders can benefit from the solutions they might share as well. .
             Similarities in Challenges 3.
             Similarities in Challenges Facing Rural and Urban Youth.
             Youth of the 90s are more likely to have experimented with alcohol, tobacco, and sex before their 15th birthday, and are more likely than ever to live in a family headed by a divorced or never-married parent (Barrons et al, 1997). Young people across the United States face serious problems whether they live in a rural or an urban area. Consistent research has been conducted analyzing the problems that youth face in today's world. Most research has focused on urban regions of the U.S. However, in recent years, more literature has emerged addressing concerns of rural youth. The distinct similarities between urban and rural youth problems are still not being addressed. Most people believe that rural students have remained isolated from the urban problems, but this is not true. A poll conducted on a national level suggests that students worry about education, family issues, violence, the environment, sexual concerns, war and drug abuse. In the same study, the top five concerns of rural students included education, family issues, war, violence and the environment (Barrons et al, 1997). Some of the main parallel problems include alcohol/drug abuse, gangs, crime and violence, and teen pregnancy. .
             Martin and Smith claim that, "Many Americans are unaware of the fact that rural children experience serious difficulties because they do not fit our stereotypes of at-risk youth.

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