About CPP

Through experience of working with children harmed online, the MCF has found that when sexual abuse or exploitation has involved online activity, the impacts on the victims and families are different. This, in turn, requires a specific response tailored to meet their protection needs. There is a real need for a comprehensive, multi-agency informed approach. More needs to be done to improve the level of aftercare received by children and their families

We know there is a dearth of professional expertise in the area of online abuse across the children’s workforce. This situation was first identified over 10 years ago, through a report published by Barnardo’s (Just One Click, Palmer, T., Barnardo’s, 2004) and in the autumn of 2013 the MCF commissioned the University Campus Suffolk (UCS) to carry out an independent survey to ascertain the extent of this lack of professional expertise throughout England. The target groups were Education, Health and Children’s Services. The results, published in January 2014, showed that 96.5% of respondents said that they needed and would value training in assessing risk online and 95% said they needed training to help children and their families with recovery from online abuse

As a result of the research, the MCF and BT joined forces to develop a training programme that will prepare all frontline workers to better protect children and young people who have suffered sexual abuse or exploitation online. It takes professionals along the path from discovery to recovery, identifying how professionals should respond at each stage and providing them with the tools to do this. The target audience for this training include police, children’s services, education, health CPS and NGO personnel as well as the judiciary

The Click: Path to Protection training model has three components:

  • THINK: Path to Protection – half day training for professionals who are likely to be first responders when a concern has been raised in connection with a child being at risk of harm online
  • ACT: Path to Protection – full day training for professionals responsible for investigating, assessing and managing cases when it has been identified that a child has been harmed online
  • MANAGE: Path to Protection half day training for Managers of staff involved in investigations, assessments and intervention programmes for children sexually abused online

The focus is firmly in the how to intervene and support, acknowledging that each profession has their own policies and procedures outlining the what to do.

The original pilot training was evaluated by Dr Emma Bond, University Campus Suffolk in May 2015

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“It is comforting to see that the Marie Collins Foundation is trying to address the issues of children harmed online and enabling front line practitioners to conduct work with children that is based on relevant research. I will be a regular visitor to the website and will be advertising the charity in the workshops I facilitate.”

Social worker, MCF training attendee

Marie Collins Foundation Partners