Are you thinking of running away?

There may be times in your life when you think the only way out is to run away. There may be many reasons why you feel like this. It could be…

• not getting on with staff or foster carers
• being bullied by other children in your home
• being bullied about living in care
• wanting to live with someone else, such as friends or family.

Running away is not an answer to whatever is going on in your life and it may end up making things even more difficult. It should help to talk to your social worker about why you feel unhappy.

There are people you can talk to in complete confidence who are not connected to anyone you know.

Keeping yourself safe

We do understand that sometimes young people are so upset that it doesn't matter what adults say - it won't make any difference.

If you ever end up in this situation, it's important to know that running away does carry RISKS. Here are a few hints that could help you to lessen the risk. This may sound strange because it's better not to run in the first place!

Keep your phone on and answer… you don't have to say where you are (although the adults are bound to ask you)... at the very least they will want to know that you are okay.

Make the phone call yourself… tell someone (a trusted adult) you are alright and even better where you are!

Keep yourself safe… look after yourself, food, drink, shelter. Be very wary of people offering you gifts of drink, drugs and accommodation – it's unusual for people to give stuff away - they tend to want something in return.

If, at any time, you feel out of your depth, Dial 999. The Police will come and pick you up, they won't be cross just pleased that you're alright. The Police will not automatically return you home if there are good reasons not to.

Missing people helpline... 116 000

Call 116 000

Text 116 000


This is a national helpline available 24 hours a day for people who run away or go missing.

Remember… there are always people that you can talk to about what is happening in your life:

  • Your Social Worker
  • A trusted adult, like a Teacher or Youth Worker
  • Childline 0800 1111