Childhood Day raises vital funds for NSPCC services as emotional abuse counselling sessions increase

Education / Mon 29th Apr 2024 at 08:05am

TODAY, the NSPCC is releasing new data which reveals over the last year its Childline service has seen a 5 per cent increase in the number of counselling sessions it has delivered to children experiencing emotional abuse.

From April 2023 to March 2024 the service’s trained counsellors delivered 2,879 sessions on this issue.

In 52% of sessions, where the main concern was emotional abuse, being shouted at or verbally abused was the top sub concern.

Being criticised, humiliated and called names was the second most common sub concern.

The children’s charity is releasing these figures as it rallies communities to come together to play their part in helping to keep children safe by supporting the charity’s annual Childhood Day on the 7th of June. 

Lidl GB has been named as retail sponsor for the event for the third year in a row and is encouraging customers and colleagues to get involved in activities across the country to help raise money.

People can get involved by donating, volunteering at a collection point or taking on the charity’s Childhood Day Mile.

All the funds raised will go towards helping the NSPCC deliver vital services, like Childline which supports children at risk.

Being isolated or ignored, not being allowed to have friends and receiving blame for things they had not done were amongst the main things that children mentioned to the service’s trained counsellors. On average, eight children a day are contacting the service about emotional abuse.

One young person that called Childline said: “I love my dad, he does not shout or swear or call me horrible names like mum. I feel way safer at his house, I don’t at mum’s – she’s really scary. Just yesterday, she screamed at my sister to ‘shut the F up!’ I honestly want to leave my house and run and run and never look back – but I can’t. What do I do?”

At the NSPCC, we know that emotional abuse can sometimes be difficult to spot as there are not always obvious signs.

Despite this, it is an issue that is impacting many children and young people.

Last year, 99,630 children were identified through Child in Need assessments as experiencing emotional abuse and this was the highest number of assessments for all types of abuse and neglect.

At the NSPCC, we know that over time and without the right support, emotional abuse can have long lasting effects on a child’s social, emotional, and physical health.

That is why it is essential that services like Childline are here for those children who need help and do not know where to turn.

Sir Peter Wanless, NSPCC CEO, said: “Half a million children a year suffer abuse in the UK. That means 7 children in a classroom experience abuse before they turn 18. This can’t go on and it doesn’t have to.

“It’s devastating to hear that contacts to Childline on emotional abuse are on the increase. We must remember that these are not children who are being overly sensitive or dislike being disciplined, they are being psychologically abused by the people who are there to protect them.

“For the past 140 years, the NSPCC has been working tirelessly to prevent abuse, change the law and support children at risk, but the charity knows that strong communities are at the heart of keeping children safe.

“That is why the charity is encouraging everyone to play their part and support Childhood Day. £4 raised could help a Childline counsellor answer a call to a child in need of help.”

Lidl GB is sponsoring the NSPCC’s Childhood Day for a third year as retail sponsor. Lidl GB has been partnered with the NSPCC for 7 years and is currently supporting young people with their mental health by raising money for Childline. Lidl GB will be helping to raise awareness of Childhood Day, as well as holding their own activities with their colleagues and customers across Great Britain to help raise vital funds.

Mark Newbold, Lidl GB Senior CSR Manager, said: 

“We’re proud to be backing Childhood Day for the third year in a row, rallying our colleagues and customers in support of such a vital cause – protecting young people. 

“No child facing abuse or feelings of isolation should ever have to struggle alone. Childline is a lifeline for so many young people, and we hope that through our partnership with the NSPCC and continued support with raising funds, children who need somewhere to turn can get help quickly.”

To find out more on how to get involved in Childhood Day this year including taking part Childhood Day Mile or volunteering at a collection point visit www.nspcc.org.uk/support-us/charity-fundraising/childhood-day/

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