Children in Need – what they do and who they help

Back in October I was invited to a Children in Need event with Bassetts vitamins

I have to be honest I wasn’t sure what to expect. I had a hellish journey there and it was piddling down with rain. By the time I arrived I’d missed the presentations but got to sit down and chat with some really lovely women about Children in Need and where the money goes. I think there is a misconception that the money goes overseas but it actually stays in Great Britain and funds some very worthwhile causes.

What’s more, people can be critical of charities partnering with brands and so on, while I can understand why people feel this way it is important to accept that without such partnerships the charities would not raise as much money or indeed awareness.

I was really pleased to sit myself down next to Kathy of Discover Children’s Story Centre at the Children in Need event

Based in East London, Children’s Story Centre was set up to provide young families with a safe place to play and learn. Kathy was telling me that they run a drop in for homeless mothers and their children who, otherwise may not have anywhere to go or play too. I think in the current climate, with Sure Start Centres closing and more and more families being made homeless you can agree that places like these are vitally important and Kathy emphasised that, without the funding from Children in Need, it just would not exist.

Obviously this is not the only project in Great Britain that Children in Need funds but a great example of why Children in Need is still relevant, in fact possibly more now than ever.

I then chatted to Beth who works directly with BBC Children in Need, I was particularly interested in a Children in Need project that is running in partnership with Boots, A Million & Me 

A Million & Me focuses on children’s mental health, particularly those aged between 8 and 13 as they are the ages that have been identified as those struggling with mental health and emotional wellbeing. Children in Need has dedicated ten million pounds over three years to support this project. Some of the projects that A Million & Me has supported include Parent Zone and YoungMinds.

From the website:

In addition to the grants being awarded throughout England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, BBC Children in Need’s Principal Partner, Boots UK, will play an important role in the programme by providing information and support to customers in their stores throughout the UK. With access to resources created by YoungMinds especially for Boots as part of A Million & Me, Boots colleagues will help parents and carers to have positive proactive conversations with children about mental wellbeing, with the aim of having a direct impact on the health and wellbeing of families in their communities.

I was really moved hearing what both women had to say. The role that Children in Need plays in the physical and emotional wellbeing of children in the United Kingdom was clear for me to see. I know from first hand experience how a family can go from being a working family one day and unemployed the next (I will write about that soon too) so this is a matter very close to my heart.

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