Barnardo’s no longer run orphanages. But the commitment to their founder’s vision lives on so that Barnardo’s is now one of the UK’s leading children’s charities. Working directly with over 110,000 children, young people and their families every year, they run 383 vital projects across the UK, including counselling for children who have been abused, fostering and adoption services, vocational training and disability inclusion groups.

Barnardo’s Sevices

Some of the many services Barnardo’s undertake include:

  • Family centres and playschemes
  • Fostering and adoption services
  • Care and community projects for disabled children
  • Parenting courses
  • Support for young carers
  • Counselling for children who have been abused and who self-harm
  • Advice on substance misuse
  • Help for young people who are being sexually exploited
  • Support to families in temporary accommodation
  • Vocational training for young people
  • Practical help for young people leaving care
  • Befrienders for women and children who have suffered from domestic violence
  • Day and residential schools for those assessed for statements of special education – for behavioural, emotional and social difficulties

Disability and inclusion

Barnardo’s believes that every child, whatever their needs, has the right to
participate fully in their community and to have the same choices, opportunities and experiences as other children; to make local friends, and to access, play, leisure and recreational facilities. Yet many services are not set up in a way that enables them to adapt to disabled children’s needs.

Barnardo’s believes a childhood dominated by institutional care can leave young disabled people ill-prepared for an independent life in the community. Often there is little option but to move into adult forms of residential provision. Even where disabled children are able to stay with their families, their social lives are likely to be more limited, and they are more dependent on their parents for leisure activities than non-disabled children and the family can face a life living in poverty.

Families with disabled children are often poorer; they are often forced to live in unsuitable housing; they cannot get out and about; and they cannot access childcare that would enable them to go to work and break out of poverty. They cannot afford or access the activities and holidays that millions of other families take for granted.

Barnardo’s is committed to the principle of inclusion for disabled children and works with children from pre-school age to 16+. Barnardo’s support young people with special educational needs and those who have been, or are at risk of being, excluded from school. Barnardo’s also work with young disabled people who because of their disability have been denied access to normal everyday living and experiences.

Barnardo’s disability and inclusion-related projects

Barnardo’s run a number of disability and inclusion-related projects – for more information visit the disability and inclusion section of the barnardo’s website.

Barnardo’s work with young carers

Facts and figures

  • The average age of a young carer is 12
  • The 2001 census shows that there are 175,000 young carers in the UK, 13,000 of whom care for more than 50 hours a week
  • More than half of young carers live in one-parent families and almost a third care for someone with mental health problems.

How Barnardo’s helps

Barnardo’s provide various services that “make it possible for a child to just be a child”:

  • Advice and emotional support through counselling and drop-in sessions
  • Support to obtain help such as home care or respite care opportunities for recreational and social activites
  • Chance to meet other young people and share experiences
  • Support to a child over any concerns or difficulties they may have
  • Time out for fun!

Barnardo’s projects for young carers

Barnardo’s run a number of projects for young carers – for more information visit the carers section of the Barnardo’s website.

Further Information

For more information on the works that Barnardo’s undertakes visit their website.

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