Commonwealth Games gold medallist Ama Agbeze teamed up with the NSPCC to talk to primary school children about how to stay safe from abuse, as part of a campaign reaching thousands of pupils.
Ama, who was born in Birmingham, helped out at a Speak Out, Stay Safe assembly conducted by the NSPCC school service at Brownmead Academy this week.
The NSPCC has delivered this service to over 20,000 schools since its inception, with visits consisting of an assembly presentation for children aged five to 11, and a one-hour classroom workshop for children in years five and six.
The interactive assemblies and workshops help children recognise the different types of abuse, and understand how to protect themselves. They also learn where they can turn for help – including the NSPCC-run service Childline.
In the 2017/18 academic year, 62 schools in Birmingham were given the Speak Out, Stay Safe service by the NSPCC which reached 20,856 children. For the West Midlands region as a whole, 124,322 children were reached by the service during this period.
Ama was named England Netball captain in 2016 and has made three appearances at the Commonwealth Games, most notably claiming gold as she led her side to victory on the Gold Coast in 2018. Her current club side is the newly formed London Pulse of the Superleague.
“It was great to take part in a Speak Out, Stay Safe assembly – the information given to the children will be crucial in keeping them safe from abuse.
“It’s incredible to see how well the children engage with the sessions and it’s great to hear how many children are being reached by this service across the country.”
NSPCC School Service area coordinator for Birmingham, Tracey Hulston, said:
“We’re so grateful to Ama for getting behind our ‘Speak Out. Stay Safe’ service.
“It makes a huge difference to the lives of children by informing them about the warning signs of abuse in easy-to-understand language.
“Once we give schoolchildren the knowledge and self-confidence to speak out against abuse, we can empower them to help prevent it, and to have such an inspirational person also taking part will just reinforce the messages to the children.”
Richard Woodfield, Phase Leader at Brownmead Academy, said:
“We feel incredibly privileged to be working alongside the NSPCC on such an important and current topic.
“At the core of Brownmead’s values is the safeguarding of its young learners, something that is reinforced by our Emotional Wellbeing School Improvement Framework.
“Tracey and the team who have helped facilitate today’s sessions, along with Ama, have succeeded in raising awareness of the dangers that could face young people today, and have done so in a safe, engaging and child-friendly manner.
“Our pupils will be going home safer, more prepared and inspired to share their new experiences with parents, friends and family.”