About children’s safety online
February is a very busy month for online safety organisations in Poland. In 2023, as in previous years, the main Safer Internet Day conference in Warsaw marked the beginning of a month of awareness-raising activities around SID in the whole country. For this event, the Polish Safer Internet Centre (SIC) invited almost 700 participants to Palladium Theatre, which made the SID 2023 conference one of the biggest events on children's online safety in Poland. The conference was also livestreamed online, reaching about 24,000 participants. A recording of the SID 2023 conference in Warsaw is available.
The internet is a crucial component of the present of children and young people and – equally important – of their future. An occasion such as Safer Internet Day allows to build awareness of the importance of joining forces in activities for a safe use of the internet, which will support the development of children and not pose a growing threat to them.
Anna Rywczyńska, Coordinator of the Polish Safer Internet Centre at NASK.
The SID conference featured an opening speech given by representatives of SID’s honorary patronage (the Chancellery of the Prime Minister) as well as the event’s industry partners Orange Foundation, Google, Meta, TikTok. They were followed by seven TEDx-style presentations of recognised experts in the field of media education and prevention of online threats to children and adolescents. Presentations covered various internet safety topics such as threats related to the internet and AI, threats related to online games, the impact of social media and computer games on adolescent brain development, creative education as a prevention of cyber threats. Conference attendees also had the opportunity to visit the stands of the organisers and partners, at which the educational offer was furtherly presented.
A jazz music band was also present on stage and took care of the artistic setting of the entire conference. The conference was closed with the concert by Aga Zaryan, a recognised Polish jazz artist.
Local initiatives – the strength of SID in Poland
The main element of the Safer Internet Day celebrations in Poland were the local initiatives organised for the protection of young internet users. As in previous years, the organisers invited educational and cultural institutions – schools, libraries, community centres, as well as companies and individuals, to participate. This year, around 4,500 initiatives were organised throughout the country, in which over 830,000 children, young people and teachers were involved. Proposals could be submitted until the end of February at www.dbi.pl, which is the landing page for SID celebrations in Poland. Moreover, the contest for the most innovative initiative was organised with attractive prizes.
In addition, a special series of 19 webinars for professionals was prepared, taking place every week of February and March at around 17:00 CET. There was a high interest in the initiative, and overall more than 4,000 professionals took part. For school students, the Polish Safer Internet Centre prepared a series of 32 online lessons and 10 online theatre performances for children with the participation of more than 7,600 schools.
We are very happy to see that every year more and more schools join the Safer Internet Day celebrations. Last year, there were over five thousand of them, and nearly three million people were covered by all the activities related to SID! This year, we have prepared many more online lessons for schools, and webinars for professionals. They will be held practically every day until the end of March, so we hope that the reach of SID will be even greater by then.
Maciej Kępka from the Empowering Children Foundation, coordinator of the SID celebrations in Poland.
The Safer Internet Day in Poland was coordinated by the Polish Safer Internet Centre, consisting of NASK National Research Institute, and the Empowering Children Foundation – implementers of the EU programme “Digital Europe”.
The main partner of the SID 2023 was the Orange Foundation. The other partners of this year’s edition were: Google Poland, Meta, TikTok, Librus. SID 2023 was organised under the honorary patronages of the Chancellery of the Prime Minister of Poland, and the Minister of Education and Science.
Find out more about Safer Internet Day in Poland. Alternatively, find more information about the work of the Polish Safer Internet Centre, including their awareness raising, helpline, hotline and youth participation services – or find similar information for other Safer Internet Centres throughout Europe.