Third project to keep more children safe across UK

  • Date: 09/07/2019
  • In: UK

Railway Children has just launched a third UK project – in Leeds - looking out for children who are at risk on and around the rail network.

Since we started this work in 2016 at Manchester Piccadilly, adding a base at London Euston in 2018, we have been able to help hundreds of young people and keep them safe from harm. Some have been running away from care or home or groomed by people planning to abuse them. Many have been exploited by criminal gangs into transporting drugs and money on the railways and others were just found at the station struggling with their own mental health issues. Wherever we’ve met them, we’ve been there and we’ve been able to make a difference.

Providing a vital turning point

Now, our team based in Leeds can reach more of those vulnerable children and change the situations they are facing before it’s too late. Through our partnership with British Transport Police we took referrals of 836 young people they found in dangerous situations last year.

Working with them and their families we have been able to provide a vital turning point in their lives whether we just offered advice and support or kept working with them long term with intensive counselling. 

Thanks to your support we’ve helped 40 children at risk of suicide, 35 who were caught up in child sexual exploitation and 64 who were being used for drug trafficking.

 

All of them were in dangerous situations they were struggling to escape from. Now we are able to offer that same help to young people across Yorkshire and Humberside – the third stage in our plan to create a safety net for these children across the country.

 

Changing children’s lives – wherever we work

Our approach in the UK is the same as when we work in India and Africa. We start by making sure children are safe, and then we work with them to find out why they were in such a dangerous situation. Once we’ve made sure that changes we know they won’t put themselves at risk again.

It takes time but the impact lasts a lifetime.

 

We already know our new team in Leeds will work with over 200 vulnerable children in their first year – children being bullied, children feeling suicidal, children caught up in gangs, children being abused – they may not look as vulnerable as those we meet living on the streets overseas, but their needs are just as great.

Groomed and exploited

Groomed and exploited

Until we stepped in...

Neil’s home-life was one typified by chaos.

He was brought up in Salford between parents that had separated from a violent and abusive relationship. His dad had alcohol problems that led to terrible fights with his mum...

Read his story here