The Children's Society - The Good Childhood Report 2017

The Children's Society - The Good Childhood Report 2017

Did you know that 1 in 3 teenage girls worry about being followed by a stranger?

As a teenager, I was followed by a stranger, a middle aged man. I was probably 18/19 and had finished college early, popped into town and was walking home. I never usually worry about things like this and I probably had my headphones in and was in a little world of my own. I had walked out of town and wasn't anywhere near home, when I felt like I was being followed. I don't live in the same house any more but I had my usual route home but this time I decided to take a different route home. I looked over my shoulder and spotted a middle aged man following me. I decided that he may just be taking the same route but had made the decision to take the main roads home just in case. I walked down many roads and then needed to use the toilet! (TMI I know!!) This was the chance to see if the guy would follow me or would just walk past. After using the toilet and exiting, I resumed the walk home. There he was again behind me. My anxiety instantly went into overdrive. I tried calling my parents to meet me but no one answered the phone so I was stuck with a 20 minuet walk left on my own. Sticking to the main roads, I walked fast. The guy was still hot on my heels. I saw a person in the distance and I thought I might just see if they could help me but as they got nearer to me, I realised it was actually a friend of mine. We stopped to chat and I hinted that he was following me. She made a point in saying something about the police as he walked slowly past, eyeing us both us. He then hurried off and that was all I saw of him. After chatting to my friend, I walked home and felt relieved that it was all over. That made me really think and made me think about safety and routes I walked. I would have usually have taken alleys, walked through parks or quieter roads, if I had of done this, who knows what would have happened. I know even now because of this, I am very cautious of people when I'm out and about. If I don't think I'm safe, I'll make a point to take myself out of the situation. I walk home on my lunch break four days a week and there's been times where there's been random strangers lurking on the street corner where I've crossed the road because they looked like they were up to no good. They may not have been, I don't know but I made that choice to not know. I think that this could be some of the reasons why girls and women feel vulnerable if they are alone. Young girls worry about being followed especially if they've been given the responsibility to go out on their own for the first time or haven't really gone out on their own before. This can all seem rather daunting. With things happening to women and girls in the world, it can be scary being on your own. Someones always got a story to tell about somethings that has happened and this can cause anxiety. If you ever feel like you're not safe, find a public building where there's lots of people in it. Make sure you have your phone or are near a phone to call someone. Keep calm. It's not just women or girls that feel unsafe, men or boys also feel unsafe and things happen to them too. It's important that you keep safe and let someone know where you are at all times.

In the Good Childhood Report 2017, this was one of this was one of the things that The Children's Society found out. Not only that but the pressures of teenagers getting into crime. Did you know the fear of crime is a common problem, leaving 2.2 million teenagers unhappy? There is a lot of pressure in today's society on teenagers that can cause this. There may be pressures on having the latest things such as gadgets, clothes, make up etc that the only way they 'fit in' would be to steal. Not only that sometimes crime can be seen as 'cool' and sometimes teens can be peer pressured into it. Teens might be seen as a wimp or an outcast if they don't do what their friendship group wants and they may feel that they have no choice but to revert to a life of crime. The Good Childhood Report 2017 also states that 1 in 4 boys worry that they'll be assaulted. I grew up in a council house area where there were lovely people and also some very not so lovely people and I know this only too well. A friend of mine got hurt when he decided to play out on the street. There was usually a group of lads that hanged around the area that lived in the same street or streets off of the one I lived in. They usually hanged out on the streets everyday after school and all day if it was the weekend. You'd usually get some kind of comment as you walked past and being a awkward as I was, I hated walking past them. My sister and I had made friends with dome siblings that lived next door but one from us and we started hanging out. On several occasions we had gone to the local park or walked to the shops to get sweets as kids do. There used to be this thug child that I was terrified of, that lived around the corner. On this particular day, they were on the corner and had water bombs. I decided that I was going to try not to be intimidated by them and walked past this boy, when he tripped me over on purpose and instructed his followers to throw the water bombs at us. I was soaked and really upset. I decided to go back home and walked back to my friends parents house and cried on his mum. I absolutely hated him. This didn't stop here, there were many times we got called names or got told we couldn't ride out bikes up and down the road. My friend got hit on several occasions and ended up with a bruise on his face. I don't know what happened to the kid but I only saw him a few times after that and then he vanished but when he went, I was relieved.

Did you know that 200,000 children say they don't get enough emotional support at home?

The government is cutting funding for local services that help children, teens and young adults when it comes to things like this. There's so many things that The Good Childhood Report 2017 has shown me. Did you know that 1 million teenagers have seven or more problems to deal with? These children are ten times more likely to be unhappy than those who have none.

In today's society, children, teens and young adults have so much to deal with and so much pressure on them when it comes to exams, schooling etc. That cutting the funding could effect these children. The Children's Society have put together a petition asking the government for more funding to help these children. The happiness of young people is at it's lowest since 2010. Crime, living in a family that is struggling with money, not any support are just some of the issues that's leaving young children unhappy. If you'd like to help support the work The Children's Society is doing, I'll like the petition here.
Let's help The Children's Society continue the good work they are doing and I'm privileged to be able to write for them again. This is something I fully support.

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