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Giving children and young people a voice…

Every year, we survey our child helpline members all around the world about the contacts they’ve been receiving from children and young people. Our child helpline members are supporting millions of children, responding to contacts ranging from children who have concerns about their mental health to children who are experiencing violence, neglect or bullying; questions from young people about sex and sexuality, to their worries about family or peer relationships; or, sometimes, children and young people who just need a friendly person at the other end of a telephone line who they can chat with, about anything, on the way to or from school.

By collecting all this child helpline data together, we can create an invaluable resource that can inform and guide policy, learning and practice about child protection and children’s rights all around the world. We can ensure that the voices of the children and young people who our child helpline members are in contact with can be heard by the policymakers and decision takers whose actions directly affect them. Every child has a voice, and our ongoing series of “Voices of Children & Young People” publications makes sure that these voices are recorded and heard by the people who need to hear them.

 

Children and young people actively reached out to a child helpline almost 14 million times in 2021. Almost three million of these contacts resulted in a child or young person obtaining advice, help or support from a child helpline counsellor.

What our data tells us is that, once again in 2021 like the years before it, over half of all the contacts worldwide were related either to mental health (almost 30%) or violence (just over 23%). Another 11% of contacts raised concerns about family relationships that children wished to discuss with a child helpline counsellor.

We’re very proud to bring you this year’s “Voices of Children & Young People Around the World”, which presents this global child helpline data for 2021, breaking it down into the five regions around the world in which our members work, and also focusing on those main reasons for making contact. Our publication also includes a special commentary by Dr. Najat Maalla M’jid, a former Supervisory Board member of Child Helpline International and now the Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General on Violence Against Children. As well as the full report, you can also download our key takeaways from the year’s data, together with our key recommendations, in English, French and Spanish. Everything is available from our Resources section, here.