All babies count campaign
In November 2011 we launched our All babies count campaign to highlight the vulnerability of babies and to call for better and earlier support for new parents. As one of the NSPCC's seven priority areas of work, we have launched innovative services to protect babies and support parents.
The NSPCC's All babies count report shows that over 198,000 babies in the UK (one in four) live in complex family circumstances where they face issues such as domestic abuse or parental drug and alcohol misuse. This is the first time we have understood the scale of need in the UK. We also know that babies are eight times more likely to be killed than older children, and in the UK 23 babies die from abuse and neglect each year. Evidence shows that intervening early, and offering effective support to parents from the earliest possible moment is the best way to prevent abuse.
The first phase of the campaign has called on everyone - the public, professionals and governments - to pledge their support and help protect all babies from abuse and neglect. We have received record levels of support with over 44,000 people adding their name to our call on governments.
In addition to setting new highs, supporters also helped to raise an amazing £25,000 with Sudocrem by using Twitter and Facebook to spread the message. You can still make a difference for babies in the UK by donating, putting up a poster and spreading the word about our work.
The NSPCC's work with babies has received significant amounts of media attention, showing politicians the level of public concern for the welfare of babies and need for greater action to protect them from harm. We have also met with politicians and arranged for them to visit our services. Altogether, the need for a greater focus on providing early support for parents and their babies is gaining political momentum. In particular, the Prime Minister has indicated he will consider how the next spending review can better target resources towards babies and children in order to tackle problems before they arise.
But campaigning is only a small part of what the NSPCC does. We also run a range of innovative front line services in 21 areas across the UK which offer direct support to families, and help us to demonstrate what works. Our services include projects to provide antenatal education and parenting support for families affected by drugs and alcohol, as well as home visiting for vulnerable young mothers, and a hospital-based DVD to prevent non-accidental head injuries in babies which is shown to parents before they take their newborn home.
We are committed to working with all professionals and agencies that work to protect babies. By running specialist events, sharing knowledge and providing free resources, the NSPCC is helping to enhance understanding of the significant risks posed to babies and influence front-line practice.
All of these achievements will ensure that the next phase of our work can be as successful as possible. Babies remain one of our top priorities and we will continue to engage in various activities, in particular calling on UK governments, to ensure that parents can access the support and services they need to help them care for their babies. We'll continue to update supporters on the latest from our work with babies on the NSPCC website.
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