Primary school children from the South Hams have raised more than £2,000 for the NSPCC by taking part in a special rock star themed fundraising event.
Woodlands Park Primary School in Ivybridge arranged the fundraiser for the children’s charity following a visit by the NSPCC’s Schools Service team, which delivered its ‘Speak out. Stay safe’ programme to the children.
The interactive programme is offered free of charge to every primary school in the UK and Channel Islands to help children identify different types of abuse and recognise trusted adults to talk to should they ever have a worry or concern.
It’s delivered by trained staff and volunteers who introduce the children to mascot Buddy to help them get across key points.
School pupil Matthew Gibson said: “In the NSPCC assemblies they teach us that children have the right to speak out and stay safe. They reminded us to tell an adult you trust if you are being bullied. If you are getting abused or neglected you could talk to Childline on 0800 1111.
“They also spoke about having the right to say no. Buddy makes everybody happy and is a speech bubble, so reminds us to speak out and stay safe, we love his visits!”
The school organised a Times Tables Rock Stars themed fundraising event to raise money for the NSPCC.
Times Tables Rock Stars is a carefully sequenced programme of daily times tables practice, and the children raised money by completing maths-based sponsored challenges and donating money to go to school dressed up as their favourite Rock Stars avatar.
Pupil Lucy Barham said: “The best dressed from each class won a 30 minutes gift voucher to get out of class to play Times Tables Rock Stars in a lesson of their choice.
“At every o’clock, we got out our sponsor sheets and read aloud challenging times tables for a minute with our partners, which we have been collecting sponsors for at home.
“The reason for this event is that some children suffer from abuse and neglect. NSPCC can use the money raised to help children like this.”
The NSPCC’s Childline service is available to children around the clock should they ever have a worry or concern, and the charity offers its Schools Service free to every primary school in Devon.
In the 2018/19 academic year more than 22,500 children were reached by the ‘Speak out. Stay safe’ programme during 122 school visits across the county.
As well as preventative services, the NSPCC also has a service centre in Plymouth that supports local children who have been sexually abused.
Kerry Bidewell from the NSPCC Schools Service said: “The school children and staff have raised an incredible amount for the NSPCC, and we are delighted to be able to award them with one of our rare fluffy Buddy mascots – our first for 2020.
“The school has supported our ‘Speak out. Stay safe’ programme through fundraising and engagement for the last five years.
“I was delighted to arrive and be greeted by year six students who remembered our mascot Buddy and our key messages from previous visits.”
The service aims to visit schools that sign up for the programme every three years to help reinforce key safeguarding messages in a simple and fun way, including learning the Childline number through an interactive song.
Teacher at Woodlands Park Primary School, Beth Williams said: “We really value the opportunity to have the NSPCC in working with our school promoting such important messages.
“The children are always engaged and the key information is made memorable.”