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Cornwall's Runaways

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3:02pm 24th June 2014

A Newquay man whose dad committed suicide when he was just six years old campaigns to stop children running away.

Figures seen by Pirate FM show more than one in ten kids has thought about fleeing.

Andy Dale fled a care home after his family network broke down: "I ended up running further and further away from the children's home, getting into glue sniffing, staying in strangers' houses and generally becoming more disengaged from the carers who were supposed to look after me.

"Many of those children are too scared to talk and worried about approaching their parents about things such as family changes, divorce, and death. Those big things that really rock children's worlds, which is incredibly worrying because the other part of the research showed parents thought they were having those conversations.

Almost a third of the children asked admit they are too scared to talk to their parents about problems. Psychiatrist Dr Sandra Scott told Pirate FM: "A conversation doesn't have to have all the answers. As a parent you don't have to be perfect, you don't have to present to your child everything in a perfect manner. But what you just have to do is be able to communicate with them enough so they can tell you how they feel and they can be listened to.

"if you know your child well then you can see when they are different, when they become more withdrawn or when they become noisier, when they're sleeping more, when they're not playing with their friends. Then that can be a sign that something is going on."

3:02pm 24th June 2014

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