Schools in the north-east are to benefit from an anti-child abuse programme.
Children’s charity NSPCC Scotland will deliver an early intervention programme in 10 primary schools across Aberdeenshire with the help of a £5,700 donation from Aberdeen Standard Investments Charitable Foundation.
The Speak Out, Stay Safe project, run by the charity, will raise pupils’ awareness about child abuse and tell them where they should look for help if they need it.
NSPCC reported that one in 20 children across the UK have suffered from sexual abuse with one in three not speaking out.
A study in 2017 showed 2,631 children were listed on the child protection register in Scotland – with 158 coming from Aberdeenshire.
Last year, the Speak Out, Stay Safe programme – delivered through a series of assemblies and engaging workshops – was run in 84 schools and supported 11,892 children in Aberdeenshire.
By the end of the project, 96% of the children involved reported that they now have a clearer understanding of abuse and 99% of their teachers agreed – 67% of these children claimed they feel comfortable talking to someone about abuse if they need to.
The NSPCC has said it believes that early detection of abuse can direct children to the right support services, thereby stopping the abuse sooner rather than later.
Fully funded by Aberdeen Standard Investments Charitable Foundation, NSPCC Scotland will be running the programme again between 2018 and 2019 in hope of achieving similar, if not better, results.
Claire Drummond, head of charitable giving for Aberdeen Standard Investments Charitable Foundation, said: “The project will help the children of our community gain a solid understanding of abuse.
“It will also make them aware of all the support facilities they could turn to if they are suffering from abuse.”