Posted: 31 December 2015

Highlights of 2015

We have achieved a lot over the past year thanks to your support.

Here are some of the highlights from a fantastic year.

January – we launched our show Some Warmth campaign

In January staff and supporters backed the launch of our Show Some Warmth campaign calling on energy companies to treat families with children as vulnerable customers and negotiate affordable debt repayment plans. Thanks to your petition signatures and scarfies we’ve managed to get four energy companies to change their practices, including E.On and Npower who now list 16 and 17 year olds living independently as a vulnerable group.

Show some warmth full report

Also in January

Our Streetwise project which supports young people aged 10-18 who go missing or are at risk of child sexual exploitation was confirmed for the next three years.

Streetwise Birmingham and Coventry

February – we put on our Hidden exhibition

February saw the launch of our ground-breaking portrait exhibition – 'Hidden' at the Oxo gallery in South Bank, London, supported by our Young Carers in Focus programme. The exhibition features professional portraits of young carers alongside their stories, including many of the YCiF Champions.

Our Hidden Exhibition

Also in February

A new mental health partnership, Forward Thinking Birmingham, was announced to deliver mental health services for children, young people and young adults in Birmingham.

Forward thinking Birmingham

March – we ran Over the Rainbow

Our annual Over the Rainbow event took place on Saturday 7 March in Gaydon, Warwickshire, celebrating the exceptional achievements, resilience and determination of children and young people we work with.

Inspiring stories at Over the Rainbow

Also in March

We opened our first ever vintage shop in Bungay, Suffolk.

April – we helped young people to Create a Change

Following on from our youth-led campaign teenagers from our services held a celebration event in Edward Rudolf House to mark the conclusion of a highly successful project.

Also in April

We supported our Virgin Money London Marathon runners as they undertook the gruelling challenge to support our work.

Virgin Money London Marathon

May – we opened our 100th shop

We celebrated our hundredth shop opening in Ashby De La Zouch on Friday 29 May.

Also in May

We launched Tough n Buff fitness fundraiser to encourage people to fit just a few minutes of excercise in at home. It’s back in January so watch this space.

Take part in Tough n Buff

June – we launched our Seriously Awkward campaign

We launched our Seriously Awkward campaign which calls for changes to the law to protect 16 and 17 year olds from harm, abuse and neglect.

Add your voice

July – we launched our London Hub

We held the formal launch of our London Hub network, aiming to tackle the exceptional and growing risks facing London’s children and teenagers.

Our London Hub

Also in July

Our Young Carers Festival 2015 was declared 'the best year ever' as 1,200 young carers descended on Fairthrone Manor in the Hampshire countryside to have fun, relax, socialise and get their voices heard on issues affecting them.

Our Young Carers Festival

August – we published our Good Childhood report

Which showed children in England are unhappier with their school life than those in almost every country featured in the first international survey of its kind.

The report, which marked a decade of our well-being research, achieved several million pounds worth of media profile.

Read The Good Childhood Report

Also in August

Our Lancashire programme put on the event at which staff, volunteers and service users told supporters, commissioners and community organisations about the local programmes we run.

Street Safe Lancashire

September – we introduced our service users to The Duchess of Gloucester

We welcomed HRH The Duchess of Gloucester to The Children’s Society in Manchester on Wednesday 30 September to learn more about our work. The Duchess is our royal president and has supported us for more than 30 years.

HRH The Duchess of Gloucester

Also in September

We gained support from indie rock band Florence and the Machine.

Ticket sales donations

October – we secured a partnership with Hampstead Theatre

We joined forces with the theatre as they released a new play about child sexual exploitation. Firebird. This partnership continues as Firebird heads to the West End in the New Year.

Q and A on Firebird

Also in October

Our Seriously Awkward campaign was presented to MPs at party conferences

Seriously Awkward at party conference

November – we officially launched our child sexual exploitation focus

We launched our child sexual exploitation fundraising campaign with our new report – Old enough to know better? Why sexually exploited older teenagers are being overlooked.

Our child sexual exploitation campaign

Also in November

We hosted our first ever Edward Rudolf Debate – Teens in Crisis? Asking the question: Are we failing our nation’s teenagers?

Live stream of the debate

December – we held our first flagship Advent service

We marked the start of Advent with a special service at Lambeth Palace, London in the presence of our Royal President Her Royal Highness (HRH) The Duchess of Gloucester GCVO.

A Royal visit

Also in December

MPs debated the sexual exploitation of teenagers in parliament, referencing our Seriously Awkward campaign.

MPs debate our campaign

By Hannah Flynn
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