�2.5m charity appeal begins

A NEW specialist centre dedicated to helping children in need is launching a multi-million-pound appeal to support its services over the next three years.

The NSPCC has moved its operations in the east of England to a specially-designed centre in Ipswich, where the charity will focus on helping children in care, babies suffering from neglect, and youngsters affected by sexual abuse from Suffolk and north Essex.

Dignitaries from across the region, including Ipswich mayor John le Grys and NSPCC branch president Lady Clare Iveagh, gathered at the Crown Street centre for the official opening yesterday, which marks the official changeover of services from the former Ipswich and Colchester teams.

The charity took the opportunity to launch an appeal to raise �2.5million to fund services at the Ipswich centre over the next three years.

Gwen Pearson, head of local fundraising for the east of England, said: “The appeal is specifically to raise money for this centre.


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“Everybody sees the NSPCC as a national charity and of course we are, but we work locally and we hope that people recognise the support we’re giving to local children is just as important as any other local charity.

“This will really help stop cruelty to children – it’s as simple as that.

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“The work here is twofold – we are doing therapeutic work but we’re also getting back to the charity’s core of preventing child abuse, which is really important.”

The charity is looking for volunteers to take part in the campaign’s leadership board as well as for people to take part in fundraising activities to help them reach their ambitious target.

The regional centre, one of 40 across the UK, will manage services across Suffolk and north Essex, employing around 20 full-time staff and seeing up to 200 families a year once it is fully up and running.

Regional head of services Dan Russell said: “This is the first service centre to launch in the region, and it’s really exciting to see it in action. What a fantastic place this is going to be for children and families.

“I’m sure we can do some fantastic work here and make a difference to child protection.”

To be part of the campaign’s leadership board, or to raise funds towards the target, e-mail gwen.pearson@nspcc.org.uk or call 01908 328050.

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