Children at the Table: Why all children should be listened to

Photo of Kelly Corcoran outside
Kelly Corcoran - Digital Communications Officer
Wednesday 24 January 2024
Image of two young people laughing in a park

Today, we launch Children at the Table in the hope more children will have safe and happy childhoods.

What’s Children at the Table & why is it important?

The UK could be the best place in the world to grow up. But right now, it isn’t.

Children are facing more challenges. There are more babies going without support from health visitors. More children are growing up in poverty. And more young people are waiting months on a mental health waiting list.

These trends are going the wrong way.

That’s why we’ve come together with Barnardo’s, The Children’s Society, the National Children’s Bureau and NSPCC.

Supported by more than 130 organisations from the voluntary and community sectors, we want to make sure the next government has a plan to put Children at the Table.

Ahead of the upcoming general election, we must make sure the next Prime Minister does more to make good childhoods a national priority.

Help us make children a priority
Sign the petition (opens in a new tab)

Why we’re asking the next government to transform children’s lives

By joining together, we're hoping to be a powerful voice with and for babies, children, and young people. Why? To drive political parties to commit to transforming childhoods in the UK for the better.

By putting children at the table, we are hoping more children will have the safe and happy childhoods they deserve.​

Children at the Table

A roadmap for putting children at the heart of the next Government

Read the report (opens in a new tab)

LIVE: the launch of Children at the Table

16:30 After an afternoon of insightful conversations, speeches, and activities, our Children at the Table launch draws to a close.

From handing out copies of our report to seeing the young people speak with Parliamentarians and MPs, it has been a memorable milestone in our goal to ensure all children are listened to.

15:38 To represent their voices being heard at the table, young people print their handprints and write their ideas on the tablecloth. This tablecloth will be used for a number of youth voice events where political leaders in the run up to the general election. They can keep adding to it at each event.

How can you make policy about us, without us?

A young person on tablecloth activity during Children at the Table
Tablecloth activity

15:30 During the refreshment break guests, MPs, and Parliamentarians are invited to join in a host of activities.

15:03 Whilst enjoying afternoon tea, guests also discuss the campaign and its goals. Our young people talk to MPs about the importance of having their voices heard at the table.

Parliamentarian and pledge at children at the table

Lord Russell of Liverpool

15:00 After an early afternoon of introductions and speeches, we break for refreshments with afternoon tea in the Terrace Dining Room.

14:51 Baroness Floella Benjamin follows Tim Loughton and delivers the second speech to guests.

14:45 The speeches begin!! First, we hear from Tim Loughton MP. With his opening statement, he remind those in the room that "young people might be 20% of the population, but they're 100% of the future".

Tim Loughton delivering opening speech at Children at the Table

14:44 Member of the House of Lords, Baroness Floella Benjamin, arrives and smiles for photos with our Young People.

14:37 MPs and our young people smile for photos, including Ian Byrne MP and Steve Tuckwell MP.

14:35 Our hero video highlighting our campaign is played.

14:30 Our drop-in event begins. Parliamentarians and other guests arrive, welcomed by Tim Loughton MP.

14:09 The Children's Minister, David Johnston, meets with the young people outside Parliament.

Children's Minister meets young people outside parliament

Young people with The Children's Minister David Johnston outside of Parliament

13:30 Young people supported by our charities arrive to participate with the launch.

10:55 Barnardo's CEO, Lynn Perry, appears on The Times Radio (at 54 min 30 sec) discussing the campaign and the work of the Children's Charities Coalition.

00:00 "Politicians don’t understand us", say nation’s children: at midnight, the press release for the Children at the Table campaign went live, kicking off the day's events.

Let's put children at the heart of the next government

Read the report (opens in a new tab)