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Dublin: 8 °C Saturday 7 December, 2019

Christmas Day at Childline: 1,208 calls and messages over just 24 hours

The charity had warned it would have to close its nighttime service — but a funding deal means it will now be able to stay open round-the-clock.

Image: Childline

THE CHILDLINE HELP service answered 1,208 calls, messages and texts from children throughout Christmas Day.

The ISPCC, which runs the service, released the figures this morning, saying it reflected “the vital importance of Childline in the lives of Ireland’s children”.

57 volunteers across Ireland gave up their time to man the phones yesterday, and almost three-quarters of the calls and messages received were from male children and teenagers.

“The season can bring unwelcome stress on families and issues such as financial pressures and alcohol misuse in the home can have a hugely negative impact on children’s experience of the day,” National Childline Manager Margie Roe said.

“Children contacted Childline on Christmas Day for a variety of reasons but the majority of calls this year were from children who were experiencing family difficulties and mental health issues.

While Childline will not be able to solve all of these children’s issues and concerns on Christmas Day, what we can and will continue to do is listen to, believe and empower them and most importantly of all we will show these children that we care.

The charity warned last month it may have to close its nighttime Childline service due to a lack of funding.

However, on Monday of this week, a funding agreement with the Government was announced aimed at keeping it in operation around the clock.

€400,000 was raised following a public appeal by the ISPCC, with another €300,000 pledged, and due in in January.

Their appeal is still going at

Read: Some good news for a change: A funding deal means Childline can stay open 24-hours

Read: Childline may have to close night service due to lack of funding

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