Empowering African children for digital safety for Safer Internet Day 2023

On 1 February 2023, the Safer Internet Centre in Ghana, in collaboration with the ITU Regional Office in Africa, African Telecommunications Union (ATU) and other partners, launched the fourth Africa Safer Internet Day (ASID) on Zoom. The launch served as a formal introduction to the ASID celebrations scheduled for 7 February 2023, which brings together major stakeholders, including parents, governments, and civil society organisations. The event aims to raise awareness about the emerging digital and online issues that influence the experiences of children and young people in Africa.

A group of black hands intertwined together

As some of the benefits of participating in the SIC+ programme, organisations can access relevant resources, education programmes, and awareness-raising campaigns to increase their knowledge and understanding of online safety issues. This can enable them to better protect children and young people from online risks and empower them to use digital technologies safely and responsibly. Also, it provides an opportunity for organisations to collaborate and exchange best practices. By working together, organisations can learn from each other's experiences, share resources, and develop innovative solutions to online safety challenges. This can help to strengthen the online safety ecosystem in Africa and promote a culture of safe and responsible digital use.

The ASID celebrations took place in various regions in Africa. In Ghana, the following regions including Volta, Upper West, Western Region, Greater Accra, Upper East, and Central region have reported increased participation, improved knowledge on password management, awareness on evading scams while benefiting from the internet. Furthermore, both parents and children have indicated an increased motivation to commit on improving online safety.

To further promote the ASID celebrations, social media handles were used to reach a broader audience in countries such as Ghana, Tanzania, Zimbabwe, Nigeria, India etc. Training and campaign resource materials were accessed online of the ASID website. The promotion efforts resulted in increased interest in maintaining digital hygiene, increased community involvement in child online safety, and a call for more editions of the sensitization.

The Safer Internet Centre (SIC)+ programme has provided numerous benefits, including improved awareness on digital safety issues and increased participation in online safety initiatives for the period under review. The collaboration between stakeholders, including parents, governments, and civil society organisations has led to the successful implementation of innovative actions to increase the participation of third-country organizations in online safety initiatives and best practices.

Discover more about the SIC+ programme and its participants on the Better Internet for Kids (BIK) website. Discover more initiatives and actions taken at a national level to celebrate Safer Internet Day 2023.

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