Bullying UK merges with Family Lives

Bullying UK, the UK's leading anti-bullying charity, has merged with Family Lives. Bullying UK’s co-founder, John Carnell, has joined the Digital Media team.

The merger comes during National Anti-Bullying Week (15th - 19th November) and follows research carried out by Family Lives from long calls* to their free 0808 800 2222 helpline which shows most bullying happens in schools.

Jeremy Todd, Family Lives Chief Executive said:

“I am delighted that Bullying UK is to join forces with Family Lives. We believe combining the skills, expertise and profile of Family Lives and Bullying UK will enable us to support parents to find the best way through issues relating to bullying and the problems associated with it. John Carnell is a welcome addition to Family Lives' Digital Media Team and his knowledge and expertise will help us increase still further the breadth and scope of our work supporting families throughout the UK.”

John Carnell said: “Bullying UK supports over 500,000 people a year through a range of innovative services. Merging with Family Lives will bring a huge benefit to both organisations strengthening our ability to respond to the challenges faced by families across the UK”

The merger of the two organisations comes as Family Lives recently launched its ‘Dealing with the Bullies’ briefing paper which calls for parents of bullies to receive support to tackle their bullying behaviour. Between October 2008 and April 2010, Family Lives’ free 24 hour helpline received 67,983 long calls of which 3,331 calls concerned bullying. This amounts to 5% of all long calls to Family Lives.

The report found that:

  • In 89% of the callers that rang Family Lives regarding bullying, the perpetrator was known to the victim (2,967 out of 3,331).
  • In 8% of these cases, the callers child was the perpetrator involved.
  • 68% of the perpetrators come from the school environment, either from the same class or pupils from other classes.
  • Family Lives statistics above clearly indicate that bullying continues to be a real concern to families and parents of bullied children continue to find the situation traumatic and difficult to manage.

Parents concerned about verbal or physical abuse from their children can call the free Family Lives 24 hour helpline, on 0808 800 2222, or contact us by live chat or email.

Notes to editors

1) Family Lives is a national charity that works for, and with, parents. We encourage parents to see that asking for help is a sign of strength, and work with them to offer practical solutions and suggestions to manage their particular situations and difficulties. We deliver this support through an innovative range of free, flexible, responsive services - shaped by parents for parents.

Our services include:

  • A free online chat service
  • A free confidential, 24-hour Parentline 0808 800 2222*
  • Email support 
  • Individual support
  • Parenting groups and workshops
  • Information materials
  • A helpful, interactive website for parents
  • A new website for parents concerned about bullying www.bullying.co.uk
  • Training for professionals
  • Volunteer opportunities

2) More information on John Carnell and Bullying UK

  • John Carnell founded Bullying Online in 1999 following his experiences at school. Bullying UK was rebranded as Bullying UK in 2007. The charity’s founding principle is to provide support to as many people as possible for the lowest cost. John has spent 11 years working in the Charity/Technology sector creating award-winning innovative projects that lower costs and increase impact across the board.
  • Currently, Bullying UK supports over 500,000 people a year with social media at its heart.
  • In addition to the core work of the charity’s website and support service, John has created many award- winning projects, including Click, Create and Print, all based around a low cost, high impact model and driven by the web. John’s work has won multiple awards, including: TalkTalk Innovation Award 2008 - Click, Create & Print, Shortlisted: The Computing Awards Winner & the BT Seen and Heard Award 2007.