Facebook to Introduce Digital safety Ambassadors schemes to Combat Cyberbullying

October 16, 2017 Published by

 

Today marks a new landmark in the digital realm as Industry leader, Facebook, has announced a new partnership with charities, Childnet International and the Diana Award, to help combat cyberbullying and promote online safety initiatives.

The commitment between all three parties will aim to train tens of thousands of students in 4,500 secondary schools across the UK to become trained ‘Digital Safety Ambassadors’ over the next two years in order to counter cyberbullying.

The initiative was initially sparked by a survey carried out by Researchbod which revealed that 63% of 13-17 year olds were desperately seeking more peer-led education programmes in schools, with many victims preferring to turn to other young people first for support before looking for support from an adult. Estimates suggest that anywhere between 6% and 25% of children have experienced online bullying in some form.

 


Other key findings from the survey:
• More than half (55%) of respondents would deal with the problem alone rather than turn to an adult figure.
• The top reasons for young people turn to their peers first include: They are more likely to have dealt with similar experiences (40%), and they don’t want to worry their parents or guardians (38%).
• 60% of 13-17 year-olds say they have supported a friend who was being bullied, online or offline.


 

We, at Fundamentally Children, are pleased to see the steps taken by the parties involved to help encourage students to become more understanding and responsible digital citizens.

The findings from the Researchbods survey are indeed eye-opening and the plans laid out to address these are a huge step forward in this day and age to combat cuberbullying.

The idea of giving young people the tools they need to help support their peers first-hand is a welcome approach and shows that the those who have felt vulnerable as victims of online bullying are now being heard with key measures taken to help them get the support they need from their peers so they won’t suffer in silence.

The head of global safety policy at Facebook, Antigone Davis, had this to say about the new partnership:

“This partnership is the next step in our ongoing effort to help young people build safe and supportive communities. Over the last decade, we have developed a wealth of innovative resources on Facebook that enables young people to look after themselves and their peers, from our updated Safety Centre to our online reporting tools. By offering trained digital safety ambassadors to every UK secondary school we are now taking this commitment offline too.”

From today and tomorrow, pupils will be participating in “House of Us”, a digital safety event in London where teenagers will be able to immerse themselves in some online safety challenges.

 

 

 

 

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This post was written by Oomar Mauthoor

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