BOSNIA AND HERZEGOVINA Safer Internet Day Committee
Humanitarian organization "International Forum of Solidarity – EMMAUS (IFS-EMMAUS)" was established in 1999 in Gracanica, BiH with the aim of providing assistance to all vulnerable population groups, including victims of human trafficking, child pornography and online child sexual abuse... As a non-profit CSO, IFS operates on the whole BiH territory and is a member of the international organization "EMMAUS International", which operates on four world continents.
During the period 2009-2014, IFS-EMMAUS has implemented a significant number of activities within the several comprehensive projects conducted in cooperation with the BiH Ministry of Security, law enforcement agencies, Federal Ministry of Education and Science and local CSO partners, in order to prevent child pornography and other forms of sexual abuse and exploitation of children in BiH through the usage of information and communication technologies.
Project activities included the establishment of an interactive web portal for children, teenagers, parents and the general public – www.sigurnodijete.ba - comprising information on online safety, safe usage of mobile phones and other communication technology and related information. The portal is available in local languages and English, therewith reaching a wider target audience. The most important tool of the portal is the establishment of the hotline – online reporting mechanism that allows for the reporting of inappropriate content, child abuse images and related information. Till end of 2014, a total of 392 reports were received by the hotline and communicated to responsible law enforcement agencies for further action, as the Hotline is still not allowed to analyse inappropriate content, as to domestic legislation.
In November 2012, following active involvement in Hotline activities and promoting a safer digital world, IFS-EMMAUS achieved Full INHOPE membership status which enabled IFS-EMMAUS and BiH to further become involved in the prevention and fight against online child abuse, communication and collaboration with other members in the management of Hotlines, participation in the INHOPE database, in education, training and seminars organized on issues of prevention of child abuse and exploitation. A special emphasis should be made on success and honor which was given to IFS-EMMAUS and BiH on General assembly of INHOPE Association, held on June 12th 2014 in Warsaw, Poland, where Ms. Amela Efendic, IFS-EMMAUS Head of Sarajevo Office was elected as the president of INHOPE showing the efforts of both Ms. Efendic and IFS-EMMAUS to improve the protection of online child abuse in BiH and worldwide.
IFS-EMMAUS also implements a continuous awareness raising campaign for aforementioned target groups, through the usage of electronic, print and alternative media. The campaign promotes online safety through two video clips for parents and children, information materials (leaflets, posters and brochures), as well as education activities in schools. The campaign is supported by the young hip-hop artist Adnan Hamidovic – Frenkie, the ambassador to the project, aiming to attract young people, especially teenagers to visit the web portal and report abuse. As part of awareness raising activities and in cooperation with local partners – Ministry of Security/State Coordinator for Anti-trafficking in BiH, Communications Regulatory Agency of BiH, Save the Children, Microsoft BiH, One World SEE and other, for five years now IFS-EMMAUS celebrates the Safer Internet Day in BiH, implementing prevention activities in schools and distributing information materials. In 2011, under the auspices of the Ministry of Security/State Coordinator for Anti-trafficking in BiH, IFS-EMMAUS established a Committee for marking Safer Internet Day (BiH SID Committee) comprising the above actors, seeking to plan and devise future SID activities in BiH.
Activities also include educational workshops for children, parents and teachers in schools across BiH. Educational workshops were held in nearly 55 schools, with more than 2000 children and parents, as well as more than 300 teachers in primary and secondary schools across BiH. Sessions are performed with experienced experts and cyber crime inspectors, through usage of interactive learning methods and practical examples. These sessions are expanded with Training of Trainers (ToT) workshops for that target teachers of information science from selected schools across the country, reaching a wider target audience and enabling for project activities to spread across primary and secondary schools and amongst education workers. These sessions include officials from Ministries of Education, pedagogical institutes and related education institutions.
As of recently and following the aforementioned ToT workshops, IFS-EMMAUS established a completely new web portal e-school.sigurnodijete.ba available in local language. The portal was created for teaches of information sciences and other educators following the needs and requests of teachers for such a communication and information sharing tool. The portal has been extensively promoted amongst educators and has accomplished the introduction of www.sigurnodijete.ba as a homepage in information science classrooms in most schools across BiH.
In the period between 2009-2014 several public events, as a Regional Conference “Comprehensive Approach to Addressing the Problem of Online Safety for Children and Youth” held on December 13, 2012 in Sarajevo, and several press conferences have been held with the aim of prevention and awareness raising through the electronic, printed and alternative media and the inclusion of the media as an important segment in awareness raising of the public regarding problem of child abuse through the information and communication technologies. The conferences were addresses by the Ministry of Security of BiH/Department for Combating Trafficking in Human Beings, Save the Children and IFS-EMMAUS, gathering numerous partner institutions and CSOs. A very important segment during the press conferences was the presence of high school students as one of the main target groups of the project who were actively involved in the projects activities and who presented their work (documentaries, video clips, papers) on the theme of protection on the Internet during these events.
The added value to project implementation was achieved in April 2012, with the recommendation of the BiH Council of Ministers for negotiations to be initiated with the European Commission and Letter of Intent to be sent for joining the Safer Internet Programme/Community and IFS-EMMAUS to take the lead in the establishment of the National Safer Internet Center in Bosnia and Herzegovina. This activity is the result of ongoing negotiations with responsible institutions in BiH, raising of awareness on these issues amongst decision makers and lobbying of IFS-EMMAUS for more active involvement in the prevention of these crimes in the country and the wider region.
SAFER INTERNET DAY
In Bosnia and Herzegovina, the celebration of the day is organized by the Safer Internet Day Committee of BiH, a body formed in 2011 with the aim of implementing preventative and promotional activities for the protection of children and youth in their use of information and communication technologies. This body was established by the organization of International Forum of Solidarity – EMMAUS (IFS-EMMAUS) in coordination with the International Organization Insafe – a European network of centers that raise awareness of and promote safe and responsible use of the Internet and mobile phones among children and youth. The committee is headed by the Coordinator for Combating Trafficking in Human Beings and Illegal Migration, and its members include representatives of the Communications Regulatory Agency of BiH, IFS-EMMAUS, Save the Children, OneWorldSEE, and Microsoft BiH. Safer Internet Day is just one in a series of activities that these organizations, individually and jointly, have implemented with the aim of educating children and parents about the risks that the Internet brings, and how to adequately protect themselves from them.
Safer Internet Day was marked for the first time in BiH in 2011, under the slogan, "Internet, it's more than a game, it's your life!". In primary school „Osman Nuri Hadzic“ and Secondary Economic School in Sarajevo, SID Committee of BiH were held presentations for both students and teachers about the necessity of safer use of Internet and social networks.
Safer Internet Day 2012 was marked under the slogan „Discover the digital world together…safely!“. On this occasion, IFS-EMMAUS presented a web portal www.sigurnodijete.ba, and Microsoft published the results of its research Microsoft Computing Safety Index (MCSI), with the purpose of promoting safer digital environment.
Central event of marking the Safer Internet Day 2013 was held on 5 February in Secondary Dental School in Sarajevo, under the slogan „Connect with Respect“, where the students were informed about safe use of Internet by State Coordinator for Combating Trafficking in Human Beings, head of IFS-EMMAUS Sarajevo Office and director of OneWorldSEE organization.
Safer Internet Day 2014 was marked on 11 February, under the slogan „Let's create a better Internet together” through collaboration with partner CSO „Center for Missing and Exploited Children” (CNZD) from Osijek, Croatia, and through the development of special web site (www. boljiinternet.com) including applications for online competition for children of primary schools on Internet safety. The competition consisted of an online quiz with questions related to safe use of the internet, which was active on the day on which Safer Internet Day was marked, February 11th, from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Winners were chosen at random from participating children who had answered at least 80% of questions correctly, and these winners of prizes were announced on the aforementioned website. During the competition, through interactive maps, data was available regarding the number of children who participated in the quiz and from which cities of Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina they came. From Bosnia and Herzegovina, a total of 2969 children entered the competition, slightly more than from Croatia. We consider this a special success of the SID Committee of BiH, which implemented a number of activities before the competition was held, aimed at encouraging children to participate.
To ensure the greatest possible involvement of children in the competition, a video, a poster and a site on the social network Facebook (in the form of an event page) have been created, all of which promote the celebration of SID 2014, regional cooperation and networking, with an encouraging message for children to involve themselves in the competition. The video was available on the web portals of all partners involved in the activities, and was delivered to public broadcasters and other media, while posters was distributed to schools with a call for participation in the competition.
As the final event of marking Safer Internet Day in Bosnia and Herzegovina in 2014, was the official award ceremony in March 2014, in elementary school, "Aleksa Santic" in Sarajevo, during which the winners were awarded with special awards: tablet, mobile phone and camera. The awards ceremony was realized in collaboration with the Federal Ministry of Education and Science, and the Federal Minister of Education and Science who awarded the prizes.
Celebration of Safer Internet Day 2015
In accordance with the motto of 2015, Safer Internet Day will be marked, as a previous year, with joint activities that will promote the creation of a better internet for youth, in cooperation with a partner CSO from the region – the Center for Missing and Exploited Children (CNZD) from Osijek, Croatia. The SID Committee of BiH and CNZD will hold an online competition for elementary school children across BiH and Croatia on the theme of security on the Internet. The competition will take place on February 10th 2015, from 09:00 to 17:00 in the form of an online quiz with questions related to the safe use of the Internet, and will be available on the specially created website www.boljiinternet2015.com. The quiz will be available only on 10th February - the day of SID 2015 and children can find answers to the questions at the well-known BH web portal for the safe use of the Internet www.sigurnodijete.ba.
After 17:00 the system will register the contestants who answered over 80% of quiz questions correctly and, through random selection, will select competitors to win prizes for first, second and third place in each country. Winners of the quiz will be awarded with suitable awards – mobile phone and camera.
To ensure the greatest possible involvement of children in the competition, a poster has been created, to promote the celebration of SID 2015, regional cooperation and networking, with an encouraging message for children to involve in the competition. The poster will be available on the web portals of all partners involved in the activities, and will be distributed to schools with a call for participation in the competition, as well as delivered to public broadcasters and other media.
Through interactive maps available on the aforementioned website, on 10th February, data will be visible concerning the number of children who took part in the quiz and from which cities in Croatia and BiH they came from. Subsequent to the competition, the responses of children will constitute the basis from which statistics will be created regarding the level of interest and involvement of various regions and cities; and children’s knowledge of the dangers of the Internet and measures for protecting themselves. The final event, comprising awards ceremony and announcing the winners of the quiz from BiH, is planned to take place after 10th February 2015, in coordination with the State Coordinator for Combating Trafficking in Human Beings and with public and a media presence.