CHILDLINE: Speech bubble mascot Buddy promotes ‘Speak out, Stay safe’ programme

The NSPCC's Speak out. Stay safe with Buddy initiative.The NSPCC's Speak out. Stay safe with Buddy initiative.
The NSPCC's Speak out. Stay safe with Buddy initiative.
Our Childline counsellors hear from young people from across the North East of all ages, and it can be concerning to know that children of primary school age might need support.

But it’s vitally important that they know support is available to them, and one of the ways the NSPCC ensures that can happen is with their Speak out, Stay safe programme.

Using age-appropriate language, Speak out, Stay safe assemblies and workshops help children understand that abuse is never a child’s fault, that every child has the right to be safe, and how to get help from safe, trusted adults like teachers or Childline.

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It’s a vitally important programme which ensures children can recognise when something might not be right and know how to seek help.

With the help of speech bubble mascot Buddy, dedicated volunteers have delivered this programme for over 13 years and reached 1.2 million children across the country.

Some people might ask whether primary school is too early to learn about abuse and neglect, even using age-appropriate language.

On average, two children in every primary school class have experienced abuse or neglect. That’s why it’s so important that we empower young people with this knowledge as early as possible considering some may have already been exposed to things they might not otherwise understand.

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We also know some children who are experiencing abuse might not understand that what they’re experiencing is wrong. Others might be scared about speaking out because they are afraid of potential repercussions.

By helping children to recognise situations or signs of abuse from an early age, Speak out, Stay safe can enable them to share their concerns with a safe adult as soon as they are worried about something.

The team in the North East is always looking for new members and would love to hear from anyone reading this with a few spare hours a month.

Anyone can register interest or find out more through the NSPCC website, and schools can also sign up there to have Speak out, Stay safe teams deliver the programme to their children.

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