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Help Kids Escape Cycle Of Tragedy

MEDIA RELEASE – 24 February 2003
For immediate use

Help Kids Escape Cycle Of Tragedy

“Would you like to help children like eight-year-old Sally, who has been sexually abused by all the men in her family, or Arnie, four, who was punished by having his hands plunged in scalding water?” asks Ian Calder, Chief Executive of Barnardos New Zealand.

“Sally, Arnie and thousands of other children are falling through the cracks and are being caught up in the trap of poverty, which can lead on to a life of abuse and neglect.”

Barnardos is now appealing to the public to help the nation’s children escape the tragic cycle of abuse.

The most recent figures released by Child, Youth and Family Services reported that in the year up June 2000 some form of abuse or neglect were substantiated for 9,385 children and young people,” says Ian. “That’s the same number of children in Wanganui.”

They could be facing the same problems as Kim and Kelly, two neglected toddlers, who were found dirty and behaving like animals, or 4 year old Mary, who eats dog food, as that’s what she was always fed.

“Barnardos are fighting for an end to this, and to protect children when they are at their most vulnerable,” says Ian.

More Follows.
Children only have one chance to grow up, and poverty is area which can have a devastating effect on their lives. Research by UNICEF shows how the effects go far beyond the child alone.

“The broader picture shows that those who grow up in poverty are more likely to have learning difficulties, to drop out of school, to resort to drugs, to commit crimes and be out of work, to become pregnant too early an age and to live lives that perpetuate poverty and other disadvantage into succeeding generations,” it reads.

“But this isn’t news to us at Barnardos,” says Ian, “We work with children like Kim and Kelly and help thousands of children living in poverty through direct intervention where it is needed most.

“We help with childcare and education programmes to help set kids on the road to success, which in turn helps future generations of New Zealanders.”

People can help us take steps to stop child poverty, by giving generously to our annual appeal, which takes place between the 4th and 10th March.

Media Contact: Penny Gaylor, Communications Manager
(04) 385 7560 or 0272 711 611

N.B. The cases portrayed in this media release are real, but the names have been changed to protect the identity of the children.

© Scoop Media

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