Our 2021-22 annual report: celebrating 30 years of The Lucy Faithfull Foundation

16 October 2022

We are delighted to publish our 2021/22 annual report. This year also marks the 30th anniversary of The Lucy Faithfull Foundation and 20 years of the Stop It Now! UK and Ireland helpline.

Find out more below about our year or read the report for full details on our achievements and plans for the future.

The Stop It Now! helpline

Our Stop It Now! helpline supports anyone with a concern about child sexual abuse. When our advisors pick up the phone, they don’t know what type of caller they might speak to. Each caller is different and our experienced and compassionate advisors handle every contact with care and professionalism.

In 2021/22, we helped 7,658 people who contacted the helpline 15,435 times between them. This is an increase on callers (7,300) and contacts (14,197) in 2020/21.

Who called the helpline?

Around 50% of people contacting us are worried about their own sexual thoughts or behaviour towards children. Another 25% are worried about another adult’s sexual thoughts or behaviour towards children.

Professional services: assessments, interventions and case-specific consultancy

We are one of the largest UK providers of this work. We work in cases where adult men and women have been accused of, are suspected of, or are considered as posing a risk of, sexual abuse. We also work with children from the age of five, who have engaged in, or who are alleged to have engaged in, harmful or inappropriate sexual behaviour. And we deliver assessments and interventions of non-offending partners, family members, and victims of child sexual exploitation.

This year we delivered 210 risk assessments and five case consultancies, and 65 pieces of intervention and two intervention case consultancies.

 

 

Tackling online sexual abuse: services for those arrested and their families

Online offending is a growing, changing and complex problem. While undoubtedly more needs to be done to prevent online offending in the first place, we make sure services are available for those affected by an arrest.

Our Inform Plus programme helps men who are under investigation for, or have been arrested, cautioned or convicted of viewing sexual images of children online, understand their behaviour and put in place strategies to avoid reoffending in the future. Engage Plus is a similar programme to tackle online grooming. We worked with 226 men across these programmes: 97% of Inform Plus participants and 100% of Engage Plus participants who completed evaluations reported making good or maximum progress on their ability to reduce their risk of reoffending.

We work with families who are dealing with the after-effects of a loved one being arrested. Through our Inform programme we worked with 203 people and our online forum for peer-support had 11,280 posts were made by 743 active users, and was viewed by 39,137 users. Support offered by peers on the forum is a lifeline for many and provides support they can’t find anywhere else.

 

Working with young people and their families: preventing harmful sexual behaviour

With around a third of sexual offences against children and young people being carried out by other children and young people it’s vital that we do all we can to address the issue.

Our Inform Young People programme is for under-21s (or 25 where the programme is deemed suitable) who have displayed illegal, harmful or concerning sexual behaviour online.

  • 69 young people completed the programme and we had face-to-face sessions with another 17.
  • We worked with 39 parents and caregivers.

This year we continued work to develop a website for young people concerned about their own or a friend’s sexual thoughts or behaviour. Using research with young people, parents and professionals, we drafted website content and developed the brand and concept. The brand, ‘Shore’, has been created to ensure that when young people visit the site they will know they have reached a safe place.

In October 2021, we started a new project to help address harmful sexual behaviour following the Everyone’s Invited movement, and we will work with 30 schools over three years.

Advocacy, communications and awareness: influencing policy and public debate, driving awareness

Children are best kept safe from sexual abuse when the people around them act in their interests – it can’t be left to children to protect themselves. Everyone has a part to play and everyone can benefit from support and information about how best to do that. The aim of our advocacy, communications and campaigns work is to get the right child protection information to the right people at the right time.

This year saw the seventh phase of our campaign to deter people from viewing sexual images of children and having online sexual conversations with children. We achieved 291 pieces of coverage from our press release publicising a doubling in contact to our helpline and self-help resources about online offending, and we worked with partners including police forces around the UK and NSPCC’s Together for Childhood project.

In summer 2021 we ran a campaign to provide parents, carers and families with information and support to help keep children safe during the holidays. Our digital adverts were seen over 3,700,000 times and over 10,000 people visited our blog.

Protecting children in Scotland: Stop It Now! Scotland

Stop It Now! Scotland is the only organisation focused exclusively on the prevention of child sexual abuse in Scotland. The team works across multiple strands of work and with partner agencies, government departments and law enforcement agencies to keep children safe.

We worked with 75 adults concerned about their own sexual thoughts or behaviour towards children. We took what we learnt our ROSA project to prevent adolescent online harmful sexual behaviour – which worked with 67 young people over three years – and shared it through multiple networks including through chairing Scottish Government assessment and intervention workstream.

Our partnership campaign with Police Scotland to deter online grooming – #GetHelpOrGetCaught – won ‘Campaign of the Year’ at the 2021 Scottish Charity Awards.

And we established a Child Sexual Abuse Prevention Network to encourage greater sharing of lessons about better protection of children from sexual harm, and members include Police Scotland, SOLD Network and Survivors Voices.

Tackling child sexual abuse in Wales: Stop It Now! Wales

Stop It Now! Wales works across the country to increase the protection of children from sexual abuse. Since 2008 the team have worked with the government, charities, frontline services and the general public to make sure everyone is doing what they can to prevent child sexual abuse from happening.

This year we:

  • delivered educative intervention for 56 families identified by statutory or community services as at risk or as needing early intervention with regard to child sexual abuse
  • delivered 93 public education sessions to 249 parents and 740 professionals
  • delivered eight train-the-trainer sessions to 47 people who work with children and families so they can run their own awareness sessions
  • delivered nine webinars for professionals to 504 participants
  • published specific resources to support parents and carers from ethnic minority groups, parents and carers with disabled children, parents and carers who have learning disabilities and parents and carers with LGBTQ+ children, all which were developed in collaboration with partner organisations

Supporting professionals: training and consultancy

Child sexual abuse is complex, often happens in secret, and the signs can be hard to identify. People who work with children and families face challenges on a daily basis when it comes to identifying, responding to and tackling child sexual abuse. That’s why we work to ensure those working with children and families develop skills and knowledge in order to better safeguard children and young people.

  • We provided 93 training events to 1,642 professionals
  • 99% of participants said their skills had improved and 96% would recommend our training to colleagues.

This year we also worked with various agencies to deliver training that met their needs. Our courses are delivered by experienced, skilled, clinical staff who share their practice-based insights. Our materials are continually refreshed and updated to reflect the latest developments, research and evidence.

Research and international work

We research and evaluate our work to make sure what we do protects children, and we share the evidence with professionals and the public. We want to make best use of our expertise, our data and our insights, independently and in partnerships, to develop new strategies and interventions that help keep children safe. With 30 years of experience, it’s vital we do all that we can to share what we know and learn.

This has been a landmark year for our research and development activities. We published the first of a series of reports titled the Faithfull Papers, showcasing our understanding of what works to protect children to the widest possible audience.

We appointed our first Head of Research and Evaluation who is focusing on ensuring that our programmes are robustly evaluated and measuring impact effectively. Our staff were involved in publishing research about child sexual abuse and COVID-19; challenges in the management of people convicted of a sexual offence, and we completed an independent evaluation of our Eradicating Child Sexual Abuse test site work and our Family and Friends Forum.

 

Fundraising

Our work to protect children from harm would be impossible without the generosity of our supporters. Every gift, no matter the size, has a big impact on us and our work, and we truly value the support we receive from people who share our vision.

In our 30th anniversary year, your donation will make a huge difference to our work to prevent child sexual abuse.

Want to know more?

Read the full report here.

Find out about our anonymous helpline and our services for professionals.

To mark our 30th anniversary, we’ve published a series of blog posts, which detail the history of The Lucy Faithfull Foundation, celebrating our achievements, evolution and growth over the past thirty years. You can also read about our founder, Baroness Lucy Faithfull, who dedicated her life to protecting children from harm.

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