• Childline said the stress of isolation has triggered “unprecedented demand” for counselling sessions

  • It is an extension of Lidl’s three-year NSPCC partnership, which has already raised £3m


Lidl has committed to raising £2m for Childline as the charity sees a surge in demand for its services during the coronavirus outbreak.

The stress of isolation, triggering arguments at home, has triggered “unprecedented demand” for counselling sessions, according to Childline. Demand peaked on 18 March, the day Boris Johnson announced school closures, with 121 sessions delivered in a day.

Lidl’s commitment to raise £2m is an extension of its three-year partnership with the NSPCC. The money is to be raised over the next two years.

It will be used to recruit 937 Childline volunteer counsellors, enable over 77,700 counselling sessions and provide over two million visits to the Childline website.

“We’re delighted to announce the extension of our partnership with the NSPCC to support their Childline service, and now more than ever it is crucial to ensure children are heard and supported during this challenging time,” said Lidl GB CEO Christian Härtnagel.

“We’ve seen an incredible effort from colleagues across the business so far in raising money as part of our partnership with the NSPCC, and pledge to raise a further £2m to support the vital NSPCC Childline service.”

Childline founder and president Esther Rantzen said: “Childline is more crucial than ever during a challenging time like this. Now that schools, youth clubs and play groups have had to close their doors to most children, it’s essential that Childline can continue to offer help and support for our young people via the telephone or the internet.

“We know some homes are not safe, so the fact that young people are confined indoors, and no longer have access to teachers, or friends, or their extended families may mean they are at even greater risk. The invaluable support from Lidl will enable Childline, NSPCC’s life-changing service, to be there for the thousands of vulnerable children who urgently need our help every day.”

Lidl’s three-year NSPCC partnership had already raised £3m and reached a million children with lessons on recognising abuse and neglect, the discounter said.