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Friday, January 9, 1998 Published at 08:16 GMT



UK

Too many children in need
image: [ The charity says that the latest figures are 12% higher than in 1996 ]
The charity says that the latest figures are 12% higher than in 1996

The British children's charity, Childline, says it received a record 1.2 million calls to its telephone helpline last year.

The organisation reports that nearly a fifth of all the children who called said they were being physically or sexually abused.

Childline, which offers a free helpline for children in trouble or danger, said it has dealt with a steadily rising numbers of calls since it started in 1987.

But it warned that its 1997 figures were 12% higher than the previous year's total.

The charity said that many of the calls were reports from children being physically or sexually abused, mainly at the hands of their own families.

As a result, Childline said it offered protection to about 103,000 children.

Despite the number of children they were able to help, the charity said that too many children were still failing to obtain the protection they need.

Whilst 10,000 calls are made to the helpline each day, Childline said that there are only enough telephone lines and staff to answer 30% of the calls.






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