‘Not Just A Thought’ Child Protection Campaign Relaunches

Categories: Research, School of Health and Society

Monday 18 March was National Child Exploitation Awareness Day, and to mark it the University of Salford and NHS England relaunched a toolkit to support professionals working with at risk children.

Staff from the University’s School of Health and Society created the Not Just A Thought (NJAT) Campaign, co-producing it in consultation with seventy five children and young people.

NHS England commissioned University of Salford to carry out the original research. On Monday 18 March to mark the Awareness Day it was reshared via a Teams webinar to industry professionals and child protection specialists around the country.

The NJAT project features a website and a set of short films which NHS and charity workers, social workers, teachers and the police can use to help them communicate more effectively with children and young people.

Professor Andrew Rowland, Officer for Child Protection at the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health and an Honorary Professor at the University of Salford led the Not Just A Thought project. along with Dr Donna Peach, a senior lecturer in Social Work at University of Salford. 

Dr Peach commented: “We consulted with young people who had experienced sexual abuse and exploitation, because we felt it was vital that their voices were front and centre in this process. We asked them how they would design a new mode of communication and engagement if given a blank piece of paper.

“Today is a relaunch of research we carried out in 2018, but which was at risk of being lost as we were losing rights to the existing domain name. It’s great that University of Salford have stepped in and agreed to host this incredibly valuable piece of research, so its legacy can live on for future generations and for future professionals to use.”

The University team interviewed hundreds of young people and multi- disciplinary practitioners around the country, examining the strengths and weaknesses of contemporary materials used to identify those at risk of child sexual exploitation.

In 2021 The University of Salford was named the UK’s first ChildSafe certified university, pledging to produce resources to give all students tools to help them support and protect children living in their communities, as well as to recognise when children might be at risk of significant harm.

Anyone wanting more information about University of Salford and NHS England’s Not Just A Thought campaign please email D.Peach@Salford.ac.uk


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