What was your childhood like? If, on balance, it was fairly pleasant then I’m sure you’re aware how lucky you are. Today, there are 3.5 million children in the UK who are living in poverty and almost 1.5 million children experience neglect. 500,000 children are referred to social services annually.
Founder and Director of Kids Company Camila Batmanghelidjh shared these staggering statistics at BritMums Live last week, as part of a panel discussion on advocacy and charity campaigns. I was also lucky enough to speak to her briefly afterwards, when she shared a bit more about why the system is failing and what we can do to help.
The system isn’t working
Of those children who do get referred, many are still not getting the help they need. A recent report from the Centre for Social Justice revealed widespread despair from many of those working within the system.
- More than 70% of social workers say they can’t do their job properly, leaving children at risk
- Social workers have over 40 life threatening cases each
I had an idea that things were bad from talking to friends and family who are, or work with social workers but these numbers really hit home. So, what can we do about it?
See the Child
Change the system
The delivery of care in Britain is not fit for purpose. To address this, Kids Company has launched a campaign to enable the creation of an Independent Task Force that can re-design social care and mental health services for children, bringing together people from a range of backgrounds to bring about change for vulnerable children. Find out more about the campaign.
How can I help?
Just sign the petition. You can sign by simply texting I SEE to 63000 (standard network charges apply and no donation is taken) or at seethechild.org
You can also raise awareness of the campaign on Facebook and twitter by sharing a childhood photo of yourself, like this one of me: