21 November 2018
Pantosaurus – the friendly animated dinosaur – who provides simple advice to children on how to stay safe will help to switch on the Christmas lights in St Helier on Thursday.
Along with Father Christmas and Pudsey Bear, the furry and friendly dinosaur will be at the heart of the action as thousands are expected to descend on the town centre for the big switch on.
Pantosaurus will be waiting for Santa in West’s Centre at around 6pm, where he will then go with him to the Royal Square and help him switch on the town lights.
It is hoped his appearance in front of so many children will help reinforce the message behind the PANTS campaign, which was launched earlier this year in a partnership by The States of Jersey, the Jersey Safeguarding Partnership Board and NSPCC Jersey. It aims to help parents talk about child sexual abuse in an age-appropriate way so they can give their children the tools to protect themselves from harm.
Children’s Minister Senator Sam Mézec said: “Humour, animation and music are a great way of making it less awkward for parents and young children to talk about this very difficult subject and Pantosarus’s appearance at such a large public family event is a great way to help continue get this important message across.
"And, I am sure at this busy time of year Santa will welcome all the help he can get!"
The NSPCC’s Underwear Rule, which includes the PANTS acronym, provides simple advice about what to say through the friendly animated dinosaur, Pantosaurus.
Through the catchy Pantosaurus song, which you can watch on the NSPCC’s website, children are taught:
P – Privates are private
A – Always remember your body belongs to you.
N – No means no.
T – Talk about secrets that upset you.
S – Speak up, someone can help.
Launched at the Tamba Park dinosaur attraction earlier this year, this switch on is part of a number of public events and visits to schools and nurseries to help raise as much awareness as possible.
As part of the campaign NSPCC Jersey has also launched a dedicated Jersey NSPCC helpline, providing specialised advice around the clock for anyone with concerns about a child’s safety or wellbeing or to ask for advice and support.
The helpline telephone number is 0808 800 5000.
Staff from the States of Jersey have been fitting decorations around town since October and installed the trees in the Royal Square over the weekend ready for the big switch on tomorrow.