ChildLine has launched its 20th Birthday Appeal with the target of raising £20 million in order to help at least another 1,000 children every day over the next two years.
Since its launch in October 1986 ChildLine has given in-depth counselling to nearly two million children but it has never had the resources to answer every call. At present 4,500 children call for help each day and 2,500 are answered.
Ninety per cent of ChildLine’s income is received in the form of donations from the public.
ChildLine was launched by Esther Rantzen on the BBC programme Child Watch and begins its 20th Birthday Appeal with the broadcast of the documentary ChildLine: Someone you can talk to on BBC ONE on Wednesday 8 March.
The documentary focuses on the way ChildLine has been able to protect children who have been sexually abused, but ChildLine also helps children calling about a huge range of problems, including physical and emotional abuse, bullying, serious family tensions, substance abuse, bereavement, concern about friends with serious problems, pregnancy and sexual health.
ChildLine has secured support from a number of leading companies for this campaign, including founding corporate partner BT and Buena Vista International.