Thousands of children and young people face Christmas without a hot meal, a present or a safe place to sleep.
For most of us, the festive season is a happy time. But there are children all over the UK who face a Christmas without food, warmth or love.
Coronavirus has had a devastating impact on their lives. Even before the crisis millions of families were struggling. Now many are at breaking point.
More than four million children in the UK are locked in poverty. That’s the equivalent of nine children in every school class of 30. And families are struggling to afford the basics, like food and clothes.
Donate today and you could give a vulnerable child food and warmth.
Since coronavirus struck we have supported over 10,000 children and young people with basic essentials.
Thanks to the support of people like you, emergency funding has paid for:
*Breakdown of Emergency Fund spending: Food – 29%, Resources for learning and play – 24%, Home repairs/furnishings – 13%, Home appliances – 9%, Technology/devices for online home learning – 8%, Household bills – 6%, Clothing – 4%, Other items – 3%, Physical health – 3%, Cleaning and hygiene – 1%
More about our work
What does Action for Children do?
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.
What we’ve achieved
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 two million children and young people.
- We’ve helped more than 10,000 children and families 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.
Where your money goes
Your donations help us to support vulnerable children, young people and their families in the UK.
87p 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 poverty, 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.
Why regular donations matter
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.