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Abuse, violence, mental health: Children in Ireland called for help 664,000 times last year

Figures from Childline indicate children are more comfortable talking about mental health on the web, with 20 per cent of online contacts relating to this area.

CHILDLINE WAS CONTACTED by children in need of help or support over 664,000 times last year in this country.

The charity responded to 463,396 of these contacts through its phone and web based services, it said today. Throughout 2013, a significant number of children were talking about abuse and welfare with 13.5 per cent of phone contacts and 15 per cent of online contacts relating to this area.

Another cause of concern for the charity was the number of times they were contacted about mental health issues. Figures indicate children are more likely to talk about this online, as 20 per cent of online contacts related to this while nine per cent of phonecalls related to it.

Last year Childline answered its five millionth call. The charity also upgraded it’s website so it was compatible with tablet and mobile devices with funding it received from the National Office for Suicide Prevention and opening hours for its live web and text services were also expanded.

The charity released the figures today ahead of International Child Helpline Day which takes place tomorrow.

“Our members receive many calls every year related to abuse, violence, mental health and family relationships,” commented director of Child Helpline International. “Call rates are also increasing by an average 5 per cent a year, meaning that helpline demand doubles every 15 years. By continuing to listen to children and young people in this fast changing world, we hope to empower them with information, support and care into the future”.

Read: Childline responded to 1,450 calls, texts and messages on Christmas Day>

Read: €130,000 donated to charity as 45,000 kind deeds logged>

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