Peterborough United Academy and the NSPCC have launched a new partnership to help tackle abuse in the city.
The club’s youth set-up will be supported by the child protection charity’s Peterborough Service Centre which provides services around sexual abuse and exploitation for young people aged four to 19 from its Fengate hub.
The partnership, which will continue beyond the current season, follows a successful collaboration between Posh and the NSPCC last season as the club’s chosen charity of the year.
Staff from the Peterborough centre will deliver workshops to young players about healthy relationships and consent and raise awareness with staff and coaches about child sexual exploitation and harmful sexual behaviour.
The charity has recently relaunched its Protect and Respect service into schools to empower vulnerable young people to recognise grooming behaviour and unhealthy relationships, plus offering one-to-one services for young people who have been sexually exploited.
They also work with children who display harmful sexual behaviour to help them understand consent and healthy relationships through its Turn the Page service.
The Academy will help raise awareness of the NSPCC’s work in the city among young people, parents and professionals who work with children – all of whom can refer a child who needs support to the NSPCC Peterborough Service Centre.
Kayleigh Stent, Peterborough United Academy Player Care Manager, said: “As an Academy, we are delighted to be working closely with the NSPCC in Peterborough as our charity partner.
“We know how important the charity is and the work that they do and will look to build on the relationship that was forged through the football club last year when the NSPCC were the chosen charity.”
Sue Whitwood, Service Manager for Children’s Services at Peterborough NSPCC Service Centre, said: “This partnership is a fantastic opportunity to reach more young people and adults with vital safeguarding messaging and support for children.
“The service centre in Peterborough works with hundreds of children every year to support victims of sexual abuse and help prevent exploitation.
“Abuse and exploitation are often hidden crimes that have a long-lasting effect so it’s vital we are all aware of the signs and that survivors are able to access support services like those here in Peterborough.”
Young people can refer themselves to the NSPCC’s Protect and Respect service in Peterborough and adults can refer on their behalf if they have that young person’s consent. To refer of for information call 01733 207620 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.