Northampton teenager joins new campaign by NSPCC to prevent child abuse
“I would like to be part of something really special that invokes change"
A teenager from Northampton has been recruited by the NSPCC to help the charity prevent child abuse.
Thirteen-year-old Cameron is one of 15 joining a new Board for Change, which has been launched to give young people the chance to help shape the work of the NSPCC across the UK.
Cameron said: “I would like to be part of something really special that invokes change.
“I’m passionate about travelling and developing my independent skills, and I’d like to do this whilst doing something important and working with other young people from different backgrounds and experiences.
"My focus will be on some of the challenges that affect children and young people, including bullying, racial abuse and poverty. I believe it’s important to have safe places to go to in the community and I feel very lucky to have the Emergency Service Cadets.”
A spokesperson for the NSPCC said the pandemic had had a huge impact on young people, with the NSPCC’s Childline service carrying out more than 61,000 counselling sessions on mental health since the start of the first lockdown in March last year.
"But as we look to the future, the NSPCC believes it is vital that their voices are represented. The charity is calling for the Government to put young people at the centre of its recovery plans – and as part of this, their views and experiences of the last year must be listened to," the spokesperson added.
Board members will take part in new experiences and opportunities, meet other young people, as well as develop confidence and learn life-long new skills, such as campaigning and public speaking.
Over a two-year period, members will be involved in sharing what’s important to them, take part in residentials, meetings and workshops, and campaign to share their views and opinions.
They met virtually for the first time yesterday, Tuesday.
Lucy Read, NSPCC Associate Head of Participation, said: “The last year has changed the lives of many young people across the UK but, as we now look to the future, the new members of our Young People’s Board for Change have a great opportunity to make their voices heard.
“We received over 300 applications from young people to join the board and during recruitment, I was impressed by the genuine passion young people had for the NSPCC’s work and a commitment to get involved and make a difference.
“We believe that a generation of young people should not be defined by the pandemic, so it has never been more important to listen to them and embed their views into everything we do. Children are the experts on their own lives, and there is so much that we can learn from their experiences.”