Big rise in worried calls to child helpline

In 2018/19 the Helpline received 72,812 calls and emails
In 2018/19 the Helpline received 72,812 calls and emails

Contacts to the NSPCC Helpline from adults worried about the safety of a child have increased by 12 per cent.

In 2018/19 the Helpline received 72,812 calls and emails, referring almost half of these on to police and social services to take further action.

In the North West, the Helpline made 6,107 referrals to police and social services during that period.

The Helpline hears from worried adults every day and night of the week, with concerns ranging from child neglect to sexual, physical and emotional abuse.

The overall rise in contacts is also reflected in the figures for sexual abuse, which has seen an 11 per cent jump in the past year. In the North West, 575 referrals were made in 2018/19.

These figures come as the NSPCC announces a new partnership - Together we’re giving kids a brighter future - with Johnson & Johnson Ltd, the makers of Calpol. The partnership will help the charity answer 10,000 calls from people worried about a child.

Mike McGrath, NSPCC head of partnerships, said: “Our NSPCC Helpline provides a critical service across the UK. It’s vital that we can continue to provide this support to adults so that they know there is somewhere they can go if they are concerned for the safety of a child.

“We are delighted to have teamed up with Calpol which is helping us to answer 10,000 calls and be there for children who need us.”

James Gooddy, assistant brand manager at Calpol, said: “Our purpose is to ‘Let Kids Be Kids’ and therefore we are delighted to have partnered with the NSPCC – the UK’s leading children’s charity – to help keep children safe from abuse and neglect.

"This year we will be supporting the NSPCC helpline to help answer 10,000 calls, which will go a long way towards our shared goal of giving kids a brighter future.”

Johnson & Johnson Limited was and will be donating 5p to the NSPCC for every Calpol product sold in Boots until September 10; Tesco until September 24; Superdrug until October 8; and Asda until October 12 in the UK to help the NSPCC answer 10,000 calls.

Adults concerned about a child can contact the NSPCC Helpline seven days a week on 0808 800 5000, or email