Lennie James reflects on losing his mother at a young age in charity campaign

Actor Lennie James has reflected on his experience of losing his mother at a young age as part of a new charity campaign.

Barnardo’s has launched Believe In Me to highlight the importance of support services for children and young people who have experienced bereavement.

The Walking Dead star James went into care after his mother died.

In a video for Barnardo’s, he said: “I was 11, nearly 12, when my mum died and everything changed, really.

“Actually, there was quite a lot of things that stayed the same that was really good.

“I still went to the same school, I still stayed in the same neighbourhood, I still was in contact with my friends and family but myself and my brother, we went to live in a children’s home.”

He added: “People are going to say it gets better and it does, but the pain of losing your loved one, if anybody tells you it will go away, it won’t.

“A lot of my life has been aided by people who started off as strangers and kind of ended up as family and friends so if you can find the help, take the help.

“It’s not easy, but it’s worth it.”

Barnardo’s chief executive Javed Khan said: “We are grateful to Lennie for sharing his personal experiences in order to raise awareness of the challenges faced by vulnerable children and young people across the UK.

“Losing a parent is a traumatic experience for anyone, but especially for a child.

“It is vital that they receive specialist support at the right time so they can process their grief.

“At Barnardo’s we believe that with the right support all children can recover from trauma and work towards a positive future.”

For more information about the campaign visit barnardos.org.uk/urgent-appeal-2021.