BBC Children in Need 2004
BBC ONE, 9.00pm, Wednesday 10 November.
Presented by Will Young.
Within just four hours of running away from home, a
child will be targeted by a paedophile or pimp.
And yet there's literally nowhere safe for children
under 16 to run to.
There is only one six-bed refuge in the whole country
for the 100,000 children who run away in Britain each year.
In this hard hitting documentary to mark the 25th anniversary
of Children in Need, we uncover the scandal behind the statistics
the lack of action by local and national government, the struggle of
charities to fill the gap... and mostly the tragic malaise of a generation
of children whose unhappiness causes them to run.
Why does running away matter?
Running away is an important sign that something is seriously wrong
in a young person's life.
A quarter of runaways will sleep in unsafe
places and report being hungry or thirsty while they were away, a third
said they had felt frightened or alone
The longer a child runs away, the greater
the risk they face on the streets
67% of those who stay with strangers get
physically or sexually assaulted
1 in 14 survive through stealing, begging,
drug dealing and prostitution
Runaways are three times more likely to
say they have been in trouble with the police
Adults with serious problems have often
run away as a child
Young people who run once are nearly three
times more likely - and repeat runaways are six times more likely -
to use solvents in their life than those who never run
Nearly half of homeless young people at
Centrepoint ran away as children
Nearly half of sentenced prisoners in
the UK report having run away as children.
Statistics courtesy of The Children's Society.