ISPCC, the charity dedicated to enhancing the lives of children and young people, is reminding children and young people across Ireland that Childline’s 24-hour support line is available every day and night 24/7 all through the Christmas period.
ISPCC Chief Executive John Church said: “In November and December to date, the service has experienced a rise in conversations amongst children seeking support in relation to thoughts about suicide, conflict in the home and feelings of low-mood and unhappiness. Anxiety continues to be a topic frequently discussed by children who speak with Childline both online and on the phone.
“As children around the country begin their Christmas break, Childline encourages children to reach out for any reason, anytime this Christmas.”
Last Christmas, family conflict, mental health and self-harm were among challenges faced by children who contacted Childline. We anticipate that, along with these concerns, our volunteers will support children experiencing loss, anxiety and thoughts of suicide this Christmas. We expect over 600 engagements with children.
The charity is keenly aware that Christmas can be an exceptionally challenging time for many children and young people.
Childline’s 24-hour support line is there to support children and young people for any reason, and it’s a message the charity is eager that children and young people are aware of during the Christmas holidays.
ISPCC’s Director of Services Caroline O’Sullivan said: “We know that some children may feel that their concern is not ‘serious’ enough or what they are feeling or experiencing doesn’t matter as much as maybe what is going on for another child. At Childline this is far from the case, what they want to share matters, they matter, and we encourage them to reach out.
“Our dedicated volunteers and teams around the country listen and support children and young people, no matter what is on their mind or what they may be going through. Childline is there, unconditionally for them. Our online chat service is ideal for children who may feel more comfortable seeking support by typing and messaging about what is going on for them.”
Some of the many volunteers who will be supporting children this Christmas, themselves sought support from Childline when they were teenagers. Volunteer Peter O’Flanagan who reached out to the service when he was younger, said: “Just having someone to share things with and listen to what I had to say was a huge weight lifted off my chest. It’s why I volunteer now as I know how much that support meant to me. I know how important it is for children to have somewhere to turn.”
ISPCC needs to raise 75% of its funding each year from donations and relies on the generosity of people right across Ireland. The charity is grateful for all support which helps ensure its services and supports are available to children and young people 24 hours a day, every day. To support Childline’s Christmas appeal, please visit ispcc.ie or call 0818 50 40 50.
Donations, no matter how small, will help make sure every child has someone to turn to, whatever their concern or whatever challenge they face.”
Childline’s 24-Hour support line can be reached in the following ways:
Chat online: Childline.ie
Call: 1800 66 66 6
Notes to Editors
For more information, please contact Rowena Walsh, ISPCC Marketing and Communications Coordinator. Tel: 087 3157552
Email: [email protected]
ISPCC CEO John Church, ISPCC Director of Services Caroline O’Sullivan and Childline 24-hour support Volunteers are available for interview or comment
ISPCC is a charity dedicated to enhancing the lives of children and young people.
The charity provides a suite of Childline services and supports for children and young people up to and including those aged 18 years of age.
All services and supports champion prevention and early intervention, focusing on strengthening resilience and developing coping skills that will last a lifetime
Childline’s 24-hour support line can be contacted for FREE, 365 days a year 24/7. Children can chat online at childline.ie or call 1800 66 66 66.
ISPCC provide services, supports and programmes for parents/carers and those working or volunteering in child and youth settings e.g. schools, clubs, crèches etc.
Through its policy and public affairs work ISPCC advocates for meaningful change for children and young people now and leaves a legacy of improved experiences for future generations.