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Baby named after ChildLine's Colin
A MALVERN man who is ChildLine’s longest serving volunteer had a baby named after him by a teenager whom he talked out of suicide.
Colin Butler, aged 65, was one of the volunteers on the very first ChildLine shift back in 1986, and he has been serving the charity ever since.
On one of his shifts, he took a call from a young girl in great distress. “She was pregnant and she was underage,”
“She was in a real panic and she was intending to commit suicide. Eventually, I managed to persuade her to tell her mum she was pregnant and not to take the tablets.”
A year later, ChildLine received a call from the girl, who said she had had a baby boy and had named him after Colin.
“It’s very special to have somebody named after you like that," he said.
Mr Butler tells the story in a new YouTube film which shines a light on the lifeline the charity provides for vulnerable children.
Mr Butler, who volunteers at ChildLine’s West Midlands base in Birmingham, said: “When a child calls ChildLine, it’s a vital moment for them. It can be very, very difficult to pick up that phone, but that vital moment is when they pick up the courage to ring.”
Family relationship issues are the top concern of children and young people who contacted the base, accounting for 15 per cent of the total. Other reasons children called were depression (10 per cent), self-harm (six per cent) and suicide (five per cent).
Mr Butler also chairs Malvern Friends of Child- Line, which raises funds to support the service. “As a volunteer, I know first hand how important ChildLine is for children and young people in danger or distress, so I do all I can to raise awareness of the service and raise funds.
“It costs £4 to answer a child’s cry for help and that’s what spurs me on.”
To watch the film, visit youtube.com/user/nspcc.