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Group of young people holding each other while smiling facing forward

Lockdown was terrible, but she was there for me Lockdown was terrible, but she was there for me

Our impact

We are there for young people when they need it most. We see something inside every one of them - hope. Children come to us for help, to talk about their feelings, their trauma. They come to us when their way forward is uncertain, they don't know what choice to make.

But they do want to get back on the right track. These young people have a huge impact on us - they shine a light on parts of society that are broken for them. In turn, we help them regain their hope and take control of their future.

The Children's Society's impact on children and young people

We counsel, support and campaign for the young people whose hopes and happiness are the most threatened by abuse, exploitation and neglect. We couldn't do that without the help of our supporters. Find out more about what we do

Our impact on a young person's life is all driven by you - our volunteers and campaigners, our supporters who run a marathon or host a Christingle every year. No matter how you give your time to us, lend your voice to our campaigns, or support us financially you are helping us fight for the hope that's within all children across the country.  

Through our campaigning and policy work we can improve life for young people up and down the country. A change at government level means that many more young people will benefit from a positive change beyond those that walk through our doors. 

facts about our impact

6,860

young people were directly supported

69,148

campaign actions were taken

84%

of young people said their lives improved after working with us

our impact with young refugees

young man looking into distance back to tower block

My worker made lockdown bright for me My worker made lockdown bright for me

– young person

Our work during lockdown

Last year was an unprecedented time for supporting young people, especially those already experiencing discrimination and disadvantage. Many families that were poor, got poorer, criminal and sexual exploitation numbers increased, and young people’s mental health was tested. Despite the barriers of lockdown, we were determined to not just protect children but help them thrive and build hope for the future.  

We had to change the way we work so we could respond quickly to the needs of young people. From regular check-ins via phone to virtual walks, our project workers continued to provide vital support. We learnt how to provide strength and stability in uncertain times, and we continue to adapt to ensure we’re there for young people in the way that is best for them. 

facts about our work in lockdown

94%

of young people said that they would recommend the service they received to others

95%

of young people said that they felt listened to by their worker

93%

of young people said that they trusted their worker

young woman in stripy top short hair smiling outside

I’ve only got high hopes I’ve only got high hopes

Taylor is a confident young woman who wants to work in prisons helping others. But there was a time she wanted to give up on herself. This is her story.

Fighting exploitation, abuse and neglect

Each year, thousands of children are groomed for sex. They are tricked by strangers into thinking they are in a ‘normal’ relationship and forced to send photos or perform sexual acts. Over the past year, this abuse happened more and more online. And criminal exploitation didn’t stop either. Children were still being forced to skip school, carry and sell drugs away from their homes and keep secrets from loved ones.  

But our groundbreaking services are there to fight for the hope and happiness of young people threatened by abuse, exploitation and neglect. Through our services and campaigns, we work to end exploitation and abuse, and help those who have experienced it rebuild their lives. We also advocate for a better understanding of exploitation, trauma and safeguarding so, as a society, we are able to keep young people safe. 

I feel good because I can say I am safe now. I am not really worrying about it – it’s not taking over everything, I’m not panicking and stressing.

facts about system change

1,689

young people at risk of exploitation or abuse were supported

75%

of professionals said they had a better understanding of the needs of young people experiencing exploitation

our impact with exploitation

I was blaming myself, but now I know it’s not my fault. I was blaming myself, but now I know it’s not my fault.

boy standing outside school with backpack on and red t-shirt

Ending child poverty

The pandemic plunged many families into poverty and left many children unsure about their future. We launched an emergency campaign and managed to secure free school meals for the most vulnerable groups. Thanks to our amazing campaigners, we also secured millions in local funding for families in crisis, meaning they had somewhere to turn to keep the bills paid and food on the table.  

Our Coordinated Community Support programme (CCS) went above and beyond to bring support to individuals and families facing financial crisis. We worked with schools, food providers and advice agencies to make sure people could access vital support when they needed it. 

facts about poverty campaigns

£490million

in funding was secured through our campaigning to support families in crisis

2000

households received food, fuel or other direct support through our CCS programme

Coaching children in care

Young people in care have been through significant trauma. It’s hard to adjust to life outside the family home. Many move from placement to placement, unable to settle. They might go missing or use substances to cope. Many struggle to engage at school and become isolated. The restrictions of the past year have made it even harder to get help. 

Our Inside Out service works closely with young people who have had multiple care placements. Our coaches guide them through difficult situations, provide stability, and build trusted relationships that enable young people to work towards milestones and goals in their life. Over time, young people were more likely to stay in their placements, less likely to go missing or offend, and felt happier, calmer, less anxious.  

facts about children in care

82%

decrease in number of missing episodes from children helped by Inside Out

89%

of the young people said their lives improved after working with the service

Transgender person reflected in a mirror looking out a window

I am so
much more
confident now
I am so much more confident now

Children's mental health and well-being

This past year, children’s mental health has been tested. Our workers stepped up the fight make sure young people could overcome their challenges. From regular video calls to sending out self-care packs, we made sure young people had what they needed to feel good about themselves and their futures.  

Our ground-breaking drop-in services mean young people don’t have to wait for an appointment. If young people are anxious about school or stressed about home life, we listen to them. We offer these young people therapy with mental health professionals, group work with their peers, online advice and guidance. 

mental health impact facts

3,415

young people were supported through our mental health and well-being services

91%

said their lives improved after working with us

Destination 2030

As we look to the year ahead, we are united in our determination to overturn the damaging decline in children’s well-being. Together we can ensure more young people are safe and happy, and we can live in a society where children are able to grow up to fulfil their hopes and dreams.