University students find out how their fundraising is helping Plymouth's children

Supporters have been finding out first-hand how they’re helping to keep children in Plymouth safe through their backing of the NSPCC. They’ve been taking a look around the children’s charity’s service centre in Plymouth and meeting the staff who work there, some of whom support children who have been sexually abused.

Students from Plymouth University’s RAG (Raise & Give) were among those who spent time looking around the centre on Wednesday evening having pledged their support to raise money for the charity this academic year.

Lucy Welsh, 21, says: “The NSPCC is one of our nominated charities and it was really great to come here and see what the money we’re raising is doing and how it is actually helping the children. And the difference it makes on an individual level, not just the national things they do, but to see specifically to Plymouth how much each child that is affected is helped.”

Emily Haberfield, 22, added: “The general trend is students like to support charities that help that kind of age group and I think we’re straight out of school and into university, so a lot of people still want to support children.”

Supporters were able to learn more about the NSPCC’s involvement in Together for Childhood, a ground-breaking ten-year programme of work aimed at preventing child abuse across the city.

They also had the chance to speak with children’s service practitioners about the therapeutic work they do with children as young as four at the centre. Letting the Future In works with children who have been sexually abused and Turn The Page is an early-intervention programme for children displaying harmful sexual behaviour.

Charlotte Panchaud, 23, says: “People are putting so much of their time and effort and themselves really into helping individuals who have had such a traumatic experience. It’s really inspirational to see and hear.

“We were given a talk by some of the participation volunteers, which was really lovely to hear from some of the children who may have been affected and are supporting the charity and their experiences from doing that. That was really motivational to our group to carry on fundraising and supporting those individuals.”

The youth participation group at the NSPCC in Plymouth shared the work they do with the charity, how they influence key decisions and have their say on the work carried out with children.

The university students have already held several fundraising events this year, holding a charity Take Me Out event, which raised £1,500, and a pizza eating competition. Other events are already lined up, including a Christmas Fayre to get them in the festive spirit and support the NSPCC’s Christmas campaign.

Community Fundraising Manager Alison Armer says: “Without the support of fundraisers, volunteers and supporters we simply wouldn’t be able to do the work that we do in Plymouth, which includes the services we run at the centre as well as visiting primary schools and delivering Speak Out Stay Safe assemblies. The school visits teach children about the different kinds of abuse and how to speak out if they have a worry or a concern.

“We’re encouraging people across the city to ‘Get Your Sparkle On’ and support our Christmas campaign, helping raise vital funds to help us protect children and prevent abuse. It’s a chance to get all glittered up and sparkly with your colleagues, friends and family, have fun and raise money for an extremely important cause.”

To find out more about how you can fundraise for the NSPCC or ‘Get Your Sparkle On’ this Christmas visit www.nspcc.org.uk/sparkleon or contact Alison Armer on 07779341767 or Alison.Armer@nspcc.org.uk