The NSPCC's FULL STOP Campaign to end cruelty to children was launched in March 1999 by HRH The Duke of York and the Prime Minister, Tony Blair. Since then, we have doubled the number of children and young people we have helped and have campaigned to protect many more.
In striving toward the goal of ending cruelty, the NSPCC is working in partnership with many other agencies, organisations and individuals and with the support of sponsors and donors.
Here are some highlights of achievements:
Some Innovations in Services since the FULL STOP Launch:
The YPCs provide a range of services, planned through consultation with young people - giving them more control over finding solutions to their problems. The FULL STOP Campaign enabled the first centre to be opened in 2000 in Warrington - this centre is now used by 100 children and others every day. In 2004, the NSPCC opened its eighth centre in the UK in East London.
Since the launch of FULL STOP the NSPCC has established 14 Schools Teams working in 120 schools which reach more than 3,000 children every term. These support and help children with issues ranging from bullying to family abuse. The success of the scheme has alerted the Government to the importance of child protection work in schools.
Working with the police and other agencies the NSPCC has set up 12 teams comprising specially trained and independent child protection social workers are strategically situated throughout England, Wales and Northern Ireland. These teams work in partnership with the Police and statutory agencies to primarily investigate organised or institutional and professional abuse. In the last year alone our SIS has investigated over 400 cases of complex abuse.
Since the Launch of FULL STOP the NSPCC has developed www.there4me.com. This is an innovative website for 12-16 year-olds living in England, Wales, and Northern Ireland that makes seeking help more accessible. So far 7,700 children and young people have received one-to-one counselling and many children have been able to turn to someone for help and advice on abuse for the first time.
The Real Children Don't Bounce Back 'Cartoon Boy' TV and poster campaign in 2002 has been the NSPCC's most successful to date. Calls to the NSPCC Helpline doubled and market research showed that 86 per cent of people who were aware of the campaign said they should do something if they were worried about the wellbeing of a child. We are creating real public change with our campaigns.
Since the launch of FULL STOP, NSPCC lobbying and influencing activities have contributed to the following changes in legislation which have helped protect children and young people.
Youth Justice and Criminal Evidence Act 1999
The NSPCC secured a major change in the legislation to allow young witnesses to give all their evidence pre-trial rather than have to go through a cross-examination in an adult trial. It also secured the help of intermediaries to help young witnesses give their evidence.
Protection of Children Act 1999
This placed a duty on regulated organisations to refer an individual working with children to the POCA list of disqualified people if they have harmed or put a child at risk and been dismissed or moved away from children as a consequence. It also made it an offence for regulated organisations to knowingly employ someone who is disqualified.
Criminal Justice and Court Services Act 2000
The NSPCC secured a number of changes to the Sex Offender Act 1997 to strengthen children's protection from sex offenders. It introduced a ban on those who have committed the most serious sexual offences from working with children.
Sexual Offences Act 2000
The NSPCC worked closely with the Government to give young people aged 16 and 17 more protection from exploitative sexual behaviour by adults in a position of trust.
Education Act 2002
This made it a requirement for all schools, local education authorities and Further Education colleges to make arrangements to safeguard and promote the welfare of children.
Criminal Justice Act 2003
Introduced indeterminate sentences for dangerous, predatory sex and violent offenders who are likely to pose a serious and continuing risk to children.
Sexual Offences Act 2003
Provides up-to-date offences and gives children much stronger protection against sexual abuse from internet pornography, prostitution, trafficking, abuses of trust and within families.
The Bill introduces a number of important changes the NSPCC has long called for, such as a Children's Commissioner for England, Local Safeguarding Children Boards, better information sharing and screening groups to review child deaths.
NSPCC training and consultancy programmes reach many volunteers and professionals who work directly with children and families and help to keep children and young people safe.
A sound grounding in research leads to a better understanding of the problem and more effective use of resources to protect children. The NSPCC's Child Maltreatment in The UK; a study of the prevalence of abuse and neglect (2000) was the first national study of the prevalence of all forms of abuse and neglect carried out in the United Kingdom. Its findings present the most authoritative account to date of the extent and nature of child maltreatment in the UK, and are frequently cited in government publications and textbooks for child protection professionals. Follow-up studies including Child Maltreatment in the Family have also been published.
The NSPCC has published over 20 other key research reports since the FULL STOP launch including publications on child deaths, child protection and education, physical punishment, a review of the Children Act, children and young people in public care, child pornography, disabled children and abuse.
More and more people are using the NSPCC website for seeking out information about protecting children. The www.nspcc.org.uk site is now visited by more than 60,000 users a month.
A website to network information on child protection to professionals was launched in March 2002 (see www.nspcc.org.uk/inform).
There has been a wide range of leaflets produced since March 1999 for both the general public and professionals who work directly with children and families. Over 8.5 million publications and leaflets have been distributed (March 99 - Sept 04) across England, Wales, Northern Ireland and the Channel Islands.
Leaflets, packs and publications include those on child protection and what to do if you suspect a child is being abused. There have also been materials on a wide range of parenting issues covering subjects from protecting babies and toddlers to positive parenting which have allowed the Society to promote its policy on physical punishment.
The NSPCC has also produced leaflets on how to safeguard children in various settings in the community, a magazine on sexual abuse for young people and a young witnesses pack that supports children in the legal system which has had wide support from professional bodies such as the Police.
There have also been specialised publications including an image vocabulary for disabled children about feelings, rights and safety along with a child safety pack for companies to keep children safe in large venues or areas. To accompany this, the Society has produced important publications on child protection policy and practice for organisations that work with children.
Incorporating the NSPCC's Annual Council Meeting, an afternoon of presentations and exhibitions running throughout the day, FULL STOP Live! was the landmark event of the new 'Someone to turn to' campaign. You can watch the afternoon presentation from FULL STOP Live!, called 'Imagine you had no one to turn to.'