Freedom Charity founder Aneeta Prem visited Bury St Edmunds last Wednesday as part of a campaign to highlight the mistreatment of young people forced into marriage by their families.
After giving assemblies to students and staff at West Suffolk College and King Edward VI School, she visited Churchgate Books, in Bury, where she signed copies of her novel, But It’s Not Fair.
Speaking before the visit, Geoff Barton, headteacher of King Edward VI School, said: “I am delighted that we will be able to introduce Aneeta Prem and the work of the Freedom Charity to our students. The issue of forced marriage is one that is often misunderstood, trivialised or wilfully ignored. The more we can do to help all young people to learn about the topic, the better. I am sure that this will be an important and eye-opening event”
The Government estimates that between 5,000 and 8,000 young people are pressed into early or forced marriage in the UK.
Freedom Charity set up the country’s first 24/7 forced marriage telephone and text helpline. Call 0845 607 0133 or text 4freedom to 88802.
Ms prem said: “It is more important than ever that everyone in the UK is aware of the warning signs of a forced marriage. By downloading the Freedom app, developed in conjunction with the Government’s Forced Marriage Unit and the Metropolitan Police, the user is just a couple of button presses away from life saving help. It’s the 999 of apps and we urge everyone to download it, for free, today.”