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New-style campaigning from the Mercury

An evening newspaper has taken up the challenge to make a difference to people’s lives.

The Leicester Mercury is planning to launch a series of campaigns encouraging both residents and the business community to join the crusade.

Each Challenge will be different and aimed at a different section of the community in Leicester and Leicestershire, including the recently-restored county of Rutland.

Editor Nick Carter said in his editorial: “The idea is similar to the Challenge Anneka-style of TV programme of the early 1990s.

“As the weeks of the challenge go by we will issue updates on how the appeal is going and put out new requests for help.

“None of the challenges will be over-demanding but they will each make a real difference to people’s lives.”

The Mercury’s first push, reported here last week, was a simple but poignant plea.

It asked for readers and businesses to work together to help children who had been physically or sexually abused.

The idea was to provide interview areas away from police stations.

The current set-up can provide a daunting, impersonal and often not very private situation – but police stations are currently the only place the work can take place.

The Mercury said: “The police want to provide a home-from-home environment where children and families can be interviewed and examined in comfort.”

The paper is planning updates on this appeal and is set to reveal future campaigns shortly.

  • More than 30 Leicestershire firms have already offered their support to help turn a house into a centre for child victims of abuse following the launch of the Leicester Mercury Challenge.

    One company has agreed to provide and fit a security system for the centre, while others are offering to provide material goods or help with any structural work needed inside the house.

    A total of £30,000-worth of sponsorship has been pledged so far.

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