Over the last year, the services provided by the NSPCC’s Childline have been needed more than ever. Since the beginning of the pandemic, Volunteer counsellors like Omar have answered more and more calls from young people who are struggling with their mental health:
‘One of the many calls we get is from children that have self-harmed. It's difficult to hear. The fact that a child’s coping mechanism is to actually harm themselves. It upsets me. Because I know that an increasing number of children are doing so,’ Omar said.
During lockdown, Childline counselling sessions have gone up by 37 per cent for 11-year-olds and under. For many callers, it’s the first time they’ve been able to speak honestly about their feelings:
‘When they come to Childline, we’re not asking them questions that make them feel guilty. They know that someone's going to hear them and respect where they’re at. And I think that in itself is quite powerful.’
Childline staff and volunteers have been among those recognised as critical workers, so they’ve been able to carry on offering their service to children dealing with trauma. Omar knows first-hand how important that has been:
‘It’s the basic thing that most of us want. We just want someone to listen to us. That's what Childline provides.’
Childline volunteers like Omar want to be there to answer every call from children facing trauma. But that’s only possible with your support. One way you can help is by entering the Omaze Million Pound House Draw, Devon. Because we’ll be donating 80% of the net proceeds to this incredible charity. Plus, you’ll get the chance to win a coastal home worth over £3,000,000.