It’s Time

Will you demand that every child gets help to rebuild their life after abuse? Help us reach 35,000 signatures!

Sign the petition

Tell the Government to support children after abuse

We're handing in our petition on 10 October for World Mental Health Day. But we need your name to make the best impact.

We take it for granted that the government has data on everything that's important. But right now, they're not counting the number of children who've been abused and need support.

This means some children are left without any help at all.

As a society, if we don't know exactly how many children are missing out, we can't do everything we can to help. So it's essential we find out.

Because every child deserves the best chance to get their life back on track after abuse.

It's time to demand change

We're calling on the Department of Health to make this happen. But we need your help.

Sign the petition

With your support we can:

Count every child

With our petition, we can make it a requirement to count every child who has been abused and needs support. This will show where the gaps are in services.

See where services are needed

We can build a picture of where more services are needed so every child has access to the essential therapeutic support they need.

Support children's mental health

And we can support every child's mental health when they need us most. So that all children are safe, healthy and can achieve everything they're capable of.

It's time to listen

"There are only so many times you can be left waiting, told you don't meet the criteria for support, or told that the help you need doesn't exist before you start to think you're unimportant, or even that you deserved the abuse."

"As children and young people who have experienced abuse, we want to be treated gently and with respect - we’re still ‘normal’ young people, please help us recover and lead fulfilled lives."

"After abuse your mind can become like a prison. You always see the same walls - the same things preventing you from moving on. But when you get the right help it sets you free. Knowing the right key is there gives you hope."

Speak up for children

We know that up to 90% of children who've experienced abuse at an early age will develop mental health issues by the time they're 181. But with your help, we can change this.

Sign our petition

Why we're campaigning

We're all responsible for ensuring children are safe, healthy and can achieve everything they're capable of. But when children are abused or neglected, it can lead to issues like depression, severe behaviour problems and even suicidal thoughts.

Providing the right support at the right time helps children get back on track. Support can be the difference between a life defined by abuse and or a child reaching their potential.

Yet, when they come forward, too many are left without the support they desperately need.


That's why we're calling for:

  • increased funding for support services for children who've suffered abuse
  • government to produce clear guidelines on when a child should be offered therapeutic support
  • more research into the scale of the problem, as well as what type of support works best.

How this affects young people

Getting the right support early is vital if children are to recover from abuse

Government must increase the number of vital services that can help children move forward towards the future they deserve, writes Peter Wanless.
Read more

96% say support for children after abuse "inadequate"

We're launching a new campaign, It’s time, to demand that every child receives essential support they need after abuse.
Read more about our survey

It’s Time: campaign report

Why we’re campaigning for every child who has experienced abuse to receive the support they need.
Find out more

We’re more than just a number

Our young experts: After abuse your mind can become like a prison. You always see the same walls and the same things prevent you from moving on.
Read more

Mental health issues are a risk facing children who have been abused

Effects of child abuse and neglect can have a profound impact on children and young people who don't receive the right support, says Children’s Services practitioner June Cousins.
Read more

Mental health reforms failing children who've been abused

Our research shows that government reforms to children’s mental health services are paying little attention to improving support for children who have been abused or neglected.
Read more

Mental health problems most common reason to contact ChildLine

1 in 3 contacts to ChildLine featured a mental health concern last year.
Read more

Tia's story

Tia's life changed when she was sexually abused by her father.
Hear Tia's story

Jamie's story

Jamie shares his story about how he finally got help and support after he was sexually assaulted at school.
View Case Study


1Sroufe, L. A. et al. (2005) The development of the person: the Minnesota study of risk and adaptation from birth to adulthood.