One year on from the first lockdown

March 2021

On Tuesday 23rd March, the UK will be holding a Day of Reflection to mark the first anniversary of our first lockdown. The past 12 months have been undoubtedly difficult for everyone, significantly affecting both our personal and professional lives.

For those children that CFAB work to protect, the impact of the Coronavirus pandemic has been devastating. Research confirms that children are at a higher risk of abuse, neglect, exploitation and violence during times of economic crisis and high unemployment. These risks are further intensified when you add in period of high stress caused by social isolation, food insecurity and constant instability. For children who have become separated from their families across international borders, the past twelve months have been unthinkable hard and are likely to remain so for many months to come.

As a result of the pandemic, CFAB is facing an increasing demand for our services, with the number of cases we are dealing with increasing both in number, by 30%, and in complexity with social and travel restrictions causing added complications.

With our annual fundraising events on hold for the second year running, we are relying on the generosity of our supporters to help us keep our free Advice Line running – this is the only Advice Line in the UK which offers specialist guidance on international child protection and cross border cases. Over the past year, we have received almost 2,000 calls from Local Authorities, the Police, the NHS and other charities who have all been concerned about the welfare of a child, with many raising concerns of abuse and neglect.

“We recently received a call from a Local Authority Solicitor. He explained that they are concerned about a child whose parents have contracted Covid-19 and may sadly die. The child has no one else who could care for him in the UK but does have family in the Philippines. The caller wondered if CFAB could help. We explained that we can work with our partner in the Philippines to identify family members, conduct assessments and follow up visits to ensure the long-term welfare and safety of the child.”                                                

Notes from an Advice Line Call, 2020

With the effects of this pandemic far from over, please will you consider making a donation to help us keep our Advice Line going?

With your help, we can work together to give vulnerable children access to a safe home and reunite them with their family.

Thank you.