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NSPCC’s new tool for navigating conversations with children about abuse

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The Troubled Families Programme is founded on a ‘whole family approach, with children and young people, together with their parents or carersworking alongside a trusted keyworker. Keyworkers lead plans to promote positive change by referring to local services and coordinating other professionals to support interrelated needs. 

 More than 400,000 families have been helped to sustain positive outcomes since the programme began, although local areas are working with more than 870,000 families in a whole family way. Families are accessing a range of local services as they are supported through the programme, from acute and specialist, to targeted, universal, community and place-based services 

Children, young people and parents may disclose worries they have to someone they feel they can trust, whether that is their keyworker or a professional from another local service. It helps anyone volunteering with or working with children to know how to frame a safe, supportive conversation, or to know how to support a parent or carer to do so 

The NSPCC have worked with gamified simulation specialists Attensi to develop a pilot 3D, interactive learning tool called ‘Talk to Me, for any adult volunteering or working with children. ‘Talk to Me’ helps adults to build their confidence in having conversations with children about some of the most difficult topics like abuse, and to ensure that children always feel listened to.  

The ‘Talk to Me’ tool has been funded by Innovate UK, and informed by NSPCC’s 2019 research ‘Let Children Know You’re Listening.’ One of the key findings from the NSPCC’s research was that children and young people wanted adults to make it clear that they are listening and taking them seriously.  

The tool is guided by expert advice to ensure it is relevant to child protection and safeguarding principles. The free resource enables learners to 

  • Access simulated scenarios and interact with fictional child characters 
  • Learn how to respond to the children and build their trust to help them talk about their experiences to successfully complete each scenario 
  • Build knowledge and confidence around how to speak to children about abuse 

 Get unlimited free access to ‘Talk to Me’ until December 2021 at the NSPCC’s website. 


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