School assembly marks milestone

Childline Schools Service event at Star of the Sea RC School, Whitley Bay.'REF 2602156498
Childline Schools Service event at Star of the Sea RC School, Whitley Bay.'REF 2602156498

A service helping protect a generation of children from abuse has reached a milestone.

The ChildLine Schools Service, which helps children to understand abuse and how they can stay safe, delivered a special assembly at the Star of the Sea RC Primary School in Whitley Bay.

And the assembly had a special theme as the service has now reached 100 per cent of mainstream schools in North Tyneside.

The service – delivered free to all schools by the NSPCC – has visited 54 schools and talked to more than 4,523 children since it began in 2012.

Joan McSloy, ChildLine Schools Service area co-ordinator for the north east, said: “This visit was a real milestone for the service.

“It’s a fantastic achievement to reach 100 per cent of mainstream schools in North Tyneside and we couldn’t have done this without our brilliant volunteers and the fantastic support of local schools.

“Our aim is to protect a generation of children from abuse and to achieve this we’ll revisit every school every two years.”

Kathryn DiMambro, deputy headteacher at the Star of the Sea School, said: “We were delighted to welcome the NSPCC into our school.

“I would like to thank the NSPCC for their informative, fun and extremely important assembly and for taking the time to come into our school and work with our children.”

Through assemblies and smaller classroom-based workshops delivered by volunteers, the ChildLine Schools Service helps children to understand abuse, gives them the confidence to talk about it and to know who to turn to if they need help.

It encourages children to recognise situations where they may need help and tells them ways of accessing help and support, including through ChildLine and other trusted adults.

Norah Pedersen, who has been a ChildLine Schools Service volunteer for two years, added: “Research tells us that child abuse can remain hidden for many years with children suffering in silence and other children continuing to be at risk from perpetrators.

“Many children don’t recognise their experience as abuse and often do not know where they can go for help.

“Sensitively teaching children about how to recognise abuse and where to get help is vitally important and that’s what the ChildLine Schools Service does.”

For more information about the ChildLine Schools Service contact Joan McSloy at joan.mcsloy@nspcc.org.uk or visit www.nspcc.org.uk/childlineschoolsservice