NSPCC offer festive help

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THE NSPCC is calling on parents with young children to get help if they are struggling to cope this Christmas.

Across Wigan and Greater Manchester, the NSPCC is highlighting the number of calls they received last Christmas to serve as a reminder to people this year.

In the Greater Manchester area, 95 referrals with concerns for a child under one were made to children’s services.

The helpline was contacted from people all across the UK who had a range of concerns about a baby including babies crying all night and seeing ones that looked cold and unkempt.

The leading children’s charity is calling for services that work with parents to recognise and tackle these problems and for the public to contact their helpline if they are concerned about a baby.

Despite a high-level of reporting to its helpline the NSPCC believes there are far more babies who are at risk but do not get the help they need.

The charity’s ‘All Babies Count’ campaign at www.allbabiescount.nspcc.org.uk argues that much more needs to be done to prevent situations getting to the point where serious action is required.

By working with families under pressure and providing effective support they can be helped before problems build up and reach crisis point.

Alison Houghton, service manager for the NSPCC Helpline in the North West, said: “The NSPCC Helpline on 0808 800 5000, help@nspcc.org.uk or text number – 88858 – is here to help any child in danger. The public have been amazing at coming forwards when they see a child in danger and we urge them to keep calling.

“But we are also taking action and calling on the government to support us and stop abuse and neglect happening in the first place. To help keep families safe, it is vital that problems are picked up early and for appropriate support be put in place.

“Services need to think about the whole family - not only helping parents deal with drink and drug problems, for example, but also ensuring they are able to care for their baby. Services must be available before it reaches crisis point.”

NSPCC Helpline on 0808 800 5000, help@nspcc.org.uk or text number – 88858