A large charitable donation will help more Islanders who are being bullied get the support they need more quickly.
The Jersey Community Relations Trust has been given £25,000 by the Lloyds Bank Foundation for the Channel Islands – money that will be used to staff its anti-bullying service until the end of next year.
The charity, set up by the States in 2004, aims to eliminate discrimination by promoting good relations between members of society. It currently offers up to 12-hours free counselling and support if people have to attend a work tribunal.
The Trust's Executive director Toni Roberts said: “In times of high demand, we will be using some of the money to refer clients to a second qualified counsellor so reducing waiting times and ensuring clients have support at a difficult time in their lives. Bullying can be very damaging to the person being bullied and to the person who is bullying which is why the support of the Foundation is so important.”
The service has dealt with around 700 enquiries about bullying since it was set up in 2011 from children as young as ten to people in their 90’s.
Mrs Roberts said: “The money is so important as charities find it very hard to obtain funding to cover the cost of salaries, something the Lloyds Bank Foundation for the Channel Islands is willing to do. Without their support, charities such as ours would not be able to provide a valuable community service. Their generosity is going to make a difference to the lives of so many people.
“The effects of bullying can be very severe. We have all suffered at some time from some form of harassment and that can lead to loss of self esteem and anxiety. The people most affected by bullying tend to be over the age of 40 and of that, 56% of bullying takes place in the work place.
“It is primarily a service for adults because prior to 2011 there was nowhere an adult could get help as no one offered anti-bullying counselling. It is very important that people have got someone they can go and talk to.
"We all probably know someone who has been or is being bullied but finds it difficult to talk about it to friends or family. Anti-bullying counselling is impartial, confidential and non-judgmental and allows people to talk about what is happening to them."
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