General Election

General Election

Much needs to change for children. Like you, we want politicians to stop ignoring society’s youngest citizens and address the big issues that shape their childhood.

Grants for Good

Grants for Good

The campaign to protect and promote government grant-making to the voluntary sector

Don't take child protection for granted

Don't take child protection for granted

Our briefing on government plans to cut off council funding for child protection and other essential children's services

Welcome to Children at Heart

What’s your top priority for children?

Children are affected by almost every decision adults make – by families, by communities and by government. They suffer the impact of economic and social problems but they rely on us to work out what should be done about it. It’s time to tell politicians that children can’t be ignored in anyone’s plans this year. We all have a childhood, and all children should be at the heart of plans for the future.

Children at Heart is an umbrella campaign for all of us who care about children. Whatever your message, make it loud, clear and connected to everyone else campaigning for children’s welfare by using the hashtag #ChildrenAtHeart and the simple, sharable resources here.  Let’s unite our voices in a call that can’t be ignored: it’s time to put children at the heart of decision-making.

My priority for children: Convention on the Rights of the Child

Guest blog by Carolyne Willow, Director, Article 39
Those shocked by the notion that human rights apply to everyone, including the young, have had plenty of time to work through their grief for childhoods past. Denial and dissent should have been replaced by acceptance and hope long ago. For sure, our country has had plenty of time to make good our children’s rights obligations.

My priority for children: make SRE statutory

Guest blog from Carol Davies, West Midlands
What is age appropriate in today’s society, where children and young people have access to pornography, children re-enacting what they have watched … young people believing that sexual violence is a norm?

My priority for young people: mental health

Guest blog by Ife Grillo, Vice Chair Campaigns and Communication, British Youth Council
You don’t get new mental health when you turn 18, adult mental health is directly linked to children and young people’s.

My priority for children: a free school meal for every child in primary school

Guest blog from Ade Sofola, Strategic Manager for 4in10.
No child should have to go hungry.

My priority for children: treat teenagers as children by law

Guest blog by Kathy Evans, Chief Executive, Children England
We forgot teenagers were still children, still vulnerable, deserving of our respect, care and protection. As a nation we did not listen when young people told us, over and over, they felt rejected and distrusted by society; suspected, rather than protected, by police.

My priority for children: government respect for children’s rights

Guest blog from Anna Edmundson, Policy and Programmes Manager, Children’s Rights Alliance for England
Failing to put children at heart? The Government’s track record on children’s rights under scrutiny.

My priority for children: putting children in poverty back on the agenda

Guest blog from Jessica Sinclair Taylor, Child Poverty Action Group
We all want the best for our children, we all believe they deserve our protection and care. Failing to free them from the hold of poverty is a moral failure, one that our politicians need to face up to.

My priority for children: put disabled children at heart

Guest blog from Debbie Smith, EDCM Campaign Manager
Too often Government fails to understand the cumulative impact of policy across Government and only view disabled children’s issues in isolation, undermining their own ambitions to improve disabled children’s lives.

My priority for children: support for kinship carers

Guest blog by Cathy Ashley, Chief Executive, Family Rights Group
Almost a half of kinship carers have had to leave paid work, or cut their hours as a result of taking on the children. Unlike adopters, they are not entitled to statutory leave. Unsurprisingly, many fall into severe financial difficulties.

My priority for young people: mentally healthy schools

Guest blog by Catherine Roche, CEO of Place2Be
Schools are so much more than a place where children learn to read and write – they steer the course for the next generation of our society.

My priority for children: therapeutic intervention for violent children

Guest blog from Carol Davies, West Midlands
So many families trying to cope with abuse from their children…. How easy it is to blame the parents for their lack of boundaries, discipline etc.

My priority for children: support for grandparental childcare

Guest blog from Sam Smethers, Chief Executive, Grandparents Plus
Children don’t overnight transition from 7-9 months to 2 or 3 years old. What happens in between? That’s why 54% of mums rely on grandparents…

My priority for children: legal aid access in care proceedings

Guest blog: Emeritus Professor June Thoburn, member of the College of Social Work’s Children and Families Faculty.
The decision of whether all sides of the argument should be put on a matter as serious as whether a child will be permanently legally split from either their birth parents, siblings, or both should never be determined by the lack of funds for legal representation.

My priority for children: access to justice

Guest blog from Shauneen Lambe, Executive Director, Just For Kids Law
Shockingly, 93% of young people with legal problems receive no help from professional independent advice services.

My priority for children: affordable homes for families

Guest blog from Seb Klier, Policy & Campaigns Manager for Generation Rent
Housing is the only product where a politician can proudly and publically state that prices are rising, and hope to win votes from it.

My priority for children: equality for care leavers

Guest blog by Mark Lee, Chief Executive, Together Trust
I believe young people in residential care deserve the same opportunities for ‘Staying Put’ that have been set out in the Children and Families Act 2014 for young people in foster placements.