A key education programme aiming to keep schoolchildren safe has received a helping hand from the University of Sunderland.

The ‘Speak out. Stay safe.’ programme is delivered in schools by the NSPCC in a bid to educate children to speak out over abuse concerns.

Vice-Chancellor and Chief Executive of the University, Sir David Bell, went along to Hudson Road Primary School in Sunderland to hand over a £1,000 donation to the charity.

Sir David said: “Over a number of years, the University of Sunderland has supported the NSPCC because of the great work that it does for children in the city.

“We are delighted to do so again this year as we know that our money will go directly to those who need the most help here in Sunderland.”

The charity is reaching thousands of schoolchildren every year in a bid to keep them safe.

Katy Carmen, Community Fundraising Manager for the NSPCC, said “The University are loyal supporters of the NSPCC, and their donation today will enable us to help even more children in Sunderland.

“The money will go towards our programme, which teaches children to understand what abuse is, and empowers them to speak out if they ever experience abuse.

“Between the 1st of April and the 31st December 2019, we reached 9,175 children and visited 36 schools in Sunderland alone to deliver the programme. This kind donation will help us to teach every child in Sunderland how to stay safe from abuse and neglect.”

Christine Danby Platt, NSPCC Area Co-ordinator, Schools Service, was at Hudson Road Primary this week where she has delivered the sessions to pupils.

Mrs Cathy Westgate, Headteacher at Hudson Road Primary, said: “NSPCC schools co-ordinators like Christine are expert at what they do – they support our work in school and make a real difference to the children.

“The interactive sessions are pitched at the just the right level for children, who enjoy them, remember what is said and use what they have learned. NSPCC is a well-recognised and trusted organisation, with deep understanding of children’s needs. We cannot do what they do and we appreciate their support.”