At Childline we have heard from children and young people of the devastating impact the pandemic has had and is continuing to have on their emotional and mental health. In fact, our trained counsellors have delivered over 60,000 counselling sessions to children of all ages on this issue alone from the start of the very first lockdown twelve months ago.

Mental health has remained the top concern that children and young people have talked to Childline about, they have talked about their loneliness, low mood, low self-esteem, depression and anxiety. For so many young people online devices, such as smartphones and laptops, have proven invaluable, in helping them to keep up with their learning, entertained and connected with their peers. But it can be a double-edged sword and we know lockdown has proven to be a perfect storm when it comes to online harms. 

So, I wanted to highlight the resources we have available at Childline and through the NSPCC’s helpline. I know we as parents and carers want to be there for our children, so that they know they can always come to us. And indeed, it is vital that we validate how our child is feeling. And we can do this, by simply listening. But if you feel that your child is finding it hard to open up, for whatever reason, Childline can also be there, providing reassurance, support and advice. Please encourage them to head to our website and message boards so they can get support from experts and their peers. These message boards are a safe platform for them to share their experiences, the chats are fully moderated and secure. Plus, the website is updated regularly to reflect what young people are telling us. Childline’s Calm Zone is also packed with tools and activities to help your child de-stress and discover new techniques that can support them when they’re feeling down.

And as parents and carers, rest assured if you are concerned about how well your child is coping, if you are worried they are feeling overwhelmed then do please reach out to your GP, or call our helpline for advice on 0808 800 5000. We also have lots of information and advice on our website, around talking about feelings and worries and introducing routines and structure, for example. And remember children can call Childline on 0800 11 11 or they can get in touch via www.childline.org.uk

Darren Worth

Childline Team Manager

  • On average, a child contacts Childline every 25 seconds.
  • Almost three quarters of our counselling sessions with young people now take place online.
  • Online counselling sessions take more than twice as long as counselling sessions on the phone
  • It costs £4 for one of our trained volunteer counsellors to answer a child’s call for help to Childline
  • £27 could pay for a Childline supervisor for one hour, supporting our volunteer counsellors.
  • £190 could pay for one Childline supervisor shift, supporting our volunteer counsellors.
  • £1,250 could pay to run Childline for an average of one hour.
  • £1,600 could pay to recruit, train and support a new Childline volunteer.
  • £30,000 could pay to run Childline for one day.
  • £42,000 could pay for a Childline supervisor for a year, supporting our volunteer counsellors.