For every £1 we spend, 85p helps children and families

I work with so many families who have recently lost their jobs and now they are just doing their best to make ends meet. They are terrified of what the future holds

Vera Beining, Children's Services Manager

Vulnerable children and families are at rock bottom. It is devastating to see families struggling to put food on the table, heat their homes, afford the bills and cope with job losses.

Before the pandemic hit over four million children across the whole of the UK were living in poverty. Now, one year on, things are even worse and there’s a new wave of children living in crisis.

Children whose lives have been turned upside down. They are going hungry and struggling with their mental health. Without the right support their futures are under serious threat.

At dinner mum gives all the food to me and my brother. I tried to share with her, but she said she isn’t hungry

Child helped by our Emergency Appeal

For the last 12 months, Vera and many other frontline workers have been a vital lifeline for 20,000 children and young people. But there are so many more who are in need and we can only reach them with your help.

Supporting them now is more important than ever.

Just £15 could help a family pay for food.

End Childhood Crisis

These children are actors and what they said is based on real stories of the families we support.

Support our End Childhood Crisis campaign and you can help give vulnerable children a safe and happy childhood.

Since coronavirus struck we have supported 20,000 children and young people with basic essentials. Thanks to the support of people like you, emergency funding has paid for:

Items purchased through the Emergency Fund

Items purchased through the Coronavirus Emergency Fund

More about our work

We protect and support children and young people. We do this by providing practical and emotional care and support. We make sure their voices are heard. And we campaign to bring lasting improvements to their lives.

Today, we run 503 services in local communities across the UK, in schools and online.

In our nurseries and children's centres, staff make sure children get the best start in life. Our foster, adoptive and modern residential services find children and young people safe and loving homes.

We step in to protect children from neglect and abuse and help those who care for others or are at risk of homelessness. Innovative projects like The Blues Programme give young people the help they need to look after their mental health.

We're also here for parents, through projects like Parent Talk, our online support service.

We’ve been helping children for more than 150 years. In 2019/20, we helped 368,648 children, young people and families. This was only possible with your support.

- Since 1861 we’ve helped almost 2 million children and young people.

- We’ve helped 20,000 children and young people during the coronavirus pandemic. We've kept 99% of our local services open.

- 25,113: the number of people we reached with mental health support in 2019/20.

- 86,000: the number of children and families supported by our children’s centres in 2019/20.

Your donations help us to support vulnerable children, young people and their families in the UK.

85p of every £1* we spend goes directly towards helping children, young people and their families. Your support is so important right now because levels of financial hardship, abuse and neglect are rising. We’ve seen a huge surge in demand for our services. Your donations help us to run these essential services, which give vulnerable children and families a vital lifeline.

We make sure that every penny you donate goes where it will have the greatest impact on children’s lives.

Most of the donations we receive from our campaigns are unrestricted. This means they’re not spent on one project or one specific area of the UK, but where the need is greatest. We wouldn’t be able to operate as a charity without this type of income. Unrestricted funds help us reach the children and young people who need us most. Funds raised from this appeal will be unrestricted and used by Action for Children for its general charitable purposes. Please see the Our Work and Impact for examples of the work we do to help children and young people and their families.

* Figure based on audited 2019/20 charity accounts that exclude subsidiary companies like commercial nurseries.

Donating a small amount every month by direct debit helps us give vulnerable children the stability they need. Our regular supporters help us carry out long-term work and keep vital projects running.

Visit Parent Talk to find parenting advice and support in a way that works for you. We also work in communities to offer practical and caring support to children and families. Find our services near you.

Other ways to donate