3 Apr 2014

More children seeking quake counselling

5:53 am on 3 April 2014

Increasing numbers of children in Canterbury are seeking counselling to cope with the flow on effects of the earthquakes.

Counselling services say children are feeling the effects of coping with stressed-out parents, uncertainty about their homes and changes to their schools.

Last year 22 percent of all calls to the 0800 What's Up children's helpline came from Canterbury, despite the region only having eight percent of the country's population.

Helpline manager Rhonda Morrison said children are often struggling to cope with their own anxieties, as well as taking on the bigger stresses of their parents.

She said often the children don't want to add to their parents' stress by telling them about their problems.

Dr Sue Bagshaw from 298 Youth Health said counselling services for quake children need to be increased. She said Canterbury could end up with a generation of people who are constantly anxious if the problems are not addressed.