Newcastle landmarks light up green for Childline and NSPCC

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Newcastle's landmarks were lit up in support of Childline.

Landmarks across Newcastle and the UK lit up green on the longest night of the year in support of NSPCC and its Childline service, which is supporting children across the country this Christmas.

The Tyne Bridge, Millennium Bridge, Newcastle Castle and Civic Centre all lit up to highlight the work of Childline and the help it provides young people in their darkest hours.

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Also, on December 22, people across the country took part in the NSPCC’s Walk for Children – a 5k fundraiser.

Childline counsellors are on hand around the clock to talk to young people throughout the festive period, including Christmas Day.

With schools closing their doors and children having reduced contact with wider support networks over the festive season, many vulnerable children face increased risks at home.

For those children and young people for whom Christmas means abuse, Childline is a lifeline.

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Last year, the service delivered 5,501 counselling sessions during the 12 days of Christmas (December 24 to January 4) - averaging out at around 450 per day – with volunteers and staff working right through the festive holiday. More than 1,000 were high-risk counselling sessions, with 64% of high-risk calls and web chats during that period coming in after dark. 

Katy Scott, NSPCC fundraising manager for the region, said: “We’re incredibly grateful to everyone who helped make these brilliant light-ups happen at what can be an incredibly difficult time of year for families, children and young people.

“Our Childline service is expecting to be contacted by a child every 45 seconds this Christmas, and while it’s free for them to contact the service, every counselling session costs the charity around £4. 

“Not only do the illuminated buildings provide a striking reminder that Childline is a beacon of light for young people in their darkest hours, everyone fundraising with a Walk for Children is making a huge difference and ensuring we can be there for children whenever they need us.”

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Paul Wallace, Service Manager Civic Facilities and Civic Management, at Newcastle City Council, said: “It’s an honour to go green for the NSPCC again this year and help remind children that even on the darkest night, hope and support are available.

“Childline is a hugely important service, and its team will continue their vital work speaking to children across the city and the UK right throughout the Christmas and New Year period. We’re grateful to them, and happy to support this important event.”

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