Toms’ retirement will leave top PR job at Childcare vacant

National children’s charity Childline is searching for a director of press and public relations to replace Wendy Toms, who will be retiring later this year.

National children’s charity Childline is searching for a director

of press and public relations to replace Wendy Toms, who will be

retiring later this year.



The role includes supporting the organisation’s fund-raising drives,

working alongside the policy, research and information department, and

overall responsibility for media relations. Lobbying activity is handled

by the policy department.



Toms runs the five-strong press team, which includes a senior press and

public relations manager, two press officers and a designer. She reports

to chief executive Valerie Howarth.



’On a normal day we handle about 40 press enquiries, and it can go up to

100 calls a day when a story breaks,’ Toms said. Childline is also

hoping to recruit its third press officer later in the year.



The charity, which celebrated its tenth anniversary in February, was

founded by television presenter Esther Rantzen as a helpline for abused

children. Last year more than 100,000 children called the free helpline

for the first time.



The organisation is primarily funded by private and company donations,

and the lack of resources means that only one third of the 10,000 calls

made to the charity each day can be answered.



Childline also campaigns to make children’s opinions and experiences

heard, particularly through producing research reports based on the

information received from callers.



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