CHILDLINE ADVICE: Take part in charity walk and raise funds for our vital service
As the Christmas school holidays are fast approaching, our staff and our volunteers at 12 Childline bases across the United Kingdom are preparing to ensure we can be there whenever a child chooses to disclose.
It’s essential that we are there to listen, because we know that December and January are common months for children to confide in Childline about abuse they have experienced.
In the last year, Childline delivered 15,515 counselling sessions where children told us about abuse they have suffered or are experiencing.
Almost 15% of those sessions were with children who were speaking about their abuse for the first time, and 20% of the sessions took place during December and January.
When children talk to us about the sexual, emotional, physical or domestic abuse affecting them for the first time, they tell us how they feel shame, how they feel fear, or are worried that they were the ones that had done something illegal.
Others revealed that they didn’t know how to tell their parents.
One young person who was sexually abused by a family member when she was nine years old told us “Christmas was just another day” for her.
She went on to say: “For me, it felt like a very dark and lonely place and, ultimately, it meant having to spend time with my abuser.”
When a child finds the courage to contact Childline, we can help them understand that they’ve done nothing wrong and they’re doing the right thing by speaking out.
But we can only do this with the help of volunteers and donations, and your donations and fundraising events mean more now than ever.
On December 21, the longest night of the year, we’re asking people to take part in the NSPCC’s Walk for Children fundraiser - a sponsored 5km route you can set yourself, to support our vital service.
If you want to find out more, including other ways to support Childline and the NSPCC, go to www.nspcc.org.uk/support-us