Jenny's Story

At aged 16 Jenny was raped by a man significantly older than her who she considered to be her boyfriend. In the aftermath she tried to carry on normally but she couldn’t. Jenny didn’t feel able to tell her family through a sense of guilt and shame. She became extremely depressed, self-harming, abusing alcohol and had thoughts of suicide.

After many years of one-to-one counselling and support from Barnardo’s, Jenny’s life has been transformed from a very dark place to one where she has now accepted that the rape was not her fault. Jenny’s self-esteem and confidence has increased significantly. She is emotionally stronger and more resilient and feels able to move on with her life. She says “being raped took 10 years of my life – I won’t let it take any more”. 


Barnardo’s runs projects and schemes across the country supporting children, young people and families where abuse has happened. We offer therapy and counselling, and help support children through court proceedings. We also work to increase public awareness of sexual abuse and to help children and young people protect themselves. 

Find out more about how we help children affected by sexual abuse and sexual exploitation

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Emergency numbers

If you think that a child is in immediate danger please dial 999. Alternatively please contact your local authority social care department, or the NSPCC 24 hour child protection helpline listed below.

If you are a child who needs help, please call Childline on 0800 11 11.

Alternatively, please call 0808 800 5000 to discuss your concerns with the NSPCC 24 Hour Child Protection Helpline.

If you are concerned about a Barnardo's member of staff, volunteer or carer please call the relevant national or regional office and speak to a Barnardo's senior manager or children's services representative.