What should I do if I am worried about a child?

It can sometimes be difficult to know what to do for the best. If you find out a child is being harmed, you may be thinking that perhaps the child is really alright.

You don’t want to provoke someone and make matters worse for the child. Perhaps you’re concerned the family might be broken up and the children put in care (although this actually rarely happens).

You may think the problem will resolve itself. And you may not know where to go for help. It may seem the easiest thing to do is to do nothing. But please don’t. Trust your own judgment. It is important that you act.

If you are worried that a child or young person is at risk of abuse or neglect, please contact Children and Families’ Social Care straight away.

If you are worried that a child may be at risk of abuse, harm or neglect please contact us:

MASH (Multi Agency Safeguarding Hub)
Civic Centre
SO14 7LU

Telephone (office hours): 023 8083 3336
Out of hours: 023 8023 3344

If you are not a professional involved with the child or family, you do not have to give your name and your conversation will be treated confidentially.

You can report a child protection concern using the referral form

Southampton Safeguarding referral form

You may also contact us by email: mash@southampton.gov.uk. You must state if you wish to remain anonymous at the start of your message, but professionals cannot remain anonymous.

Or in an emergency contact the police by telephone on 999

NSPCC Freephone Child Protection Helpline: 0808 800 5000