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Events 2019

Safer Internet Day 2019 – Together for a better Internet

On 5 February we celebrated Safer Internet Day (SID) for the 15th time in Poland. The key point of the celebration was the largest European conference for professional on online safety of kids and youth.

At the same time, throughout the month of February the organizers of SID in Poland, namely NASK and the Empowering Children Foundation, invite educational establishment to participate in the celebration of SID trough implementation of local educational campaigns. Up until this point over 3,500 such initiatives for over 200,000 children were submitted.

Safer Internet Day was established at the imitative of the European Commission and has been engaging more and more countries, not only in Europe but also worldwide, since 2004. In Poland it is organized by the Polish Safer Internet Centre (PSIC), established by the national research institute NASK and the Empowering Children Foundation as a part of the EU program entitled Connecting Europe Facility. The main partner of the event is the Orange Foundation. This year’s celebration of Safer Internet Day took place under the patronage of the Ministry of Digital Affairs, the Ministry of National Education, the Commissioner for Human Rights, the Office of Electronic Communications and the General Police Headquarters. SDI’s partners in 2019 include Facebook Poland and Google Poland. The support was also granted by: Palladium Theatre, Multimedia w Szkole and National Westminster Bank Branch in Poland.

On 5 February 2019 the key event in the celebration of SID, namely the conference “Safer Internet Day 2019” took place at the Palladium Theatre. 700 representatives of the education sector, specialists working with children and youth and the media were invited to participate in the biggest event in Europe on online safety of kids and youth. Lectures were given by: Adam Bodnar, Commissioner for Human Rights; Izabela Jąderek, sexologist; Marcin Bochenek, Director of Development of the Information Society Department at NASK; professor Jacek Pyżalski; Ewa Dziemidowicz and Agnieszka Nawarenko, psychotherapists from the Empowering Children Foundation. The organizers ensured an online broadcast of the conference, which was available at the FB profile of the Polish Centre.

This year, by using the slogan “Together for a better Internet”, the organizers of SID highlight the need to cooperate and the shared involvement of parents, teachers and other professionals, decision-makers and content and Internet providers in activities increasing online safety of kids. They emphasize that counteracting negative phenomena, such as hate, cyberbullying, addiction or harmful content online requires both professional involvement of specialists from various sectors and industries, as well as careful communication with children on the part of parents, teachers and close friends and relatives.

The slogan “Together for a better internet” emphasizes the power of shared commitment. The latest edition of the survey “Teenagers 3.0” by NASK suggests that youth don’t feel enough support from adults - 32.5 percent of surveyed who have experienced online violence declared that they have not informed anyone about that fact. That was the most commonly picked answer. 21.9 percent turned to their parents/relatives. A slightly higher number reached out to their friends (24.3 percent). Only 8.2 percent of victims of cybercrime talked to their teachers - argued Anna Rywczyńska, coordinator of the Polish Centre of the Safer Internet Program at NASK.

The celebration of Safer Internet Day has resonated nationwide thanks to the participation of the local educational and cultural establishments. Each year the organizers invite establishments from all around Poland to participate in the promotion of the idea of online safety of kids and youth and to create a friendly and creative environment online. The initiatives submitted to www.dbi.pl include educational activities, art contests, as well as unusual events such as pantomime shows, Kamishibai theatre presentations, game shows or poetry contests.

"We successfully invite schools and other establishments to organize local preventive actions as a part of Safer Internet Day for 15 years now” - said Łukasz Wojtasik, coordinator of the program “Child in the Web” from the Empowering Children Foundation. “We strive for the initiatives to move beyond just providing children with basic principles of online safety and refer to universal values and competences, such as integrity, treating others with respect, helping the weak, protecting privacy or restraint. We emphasize that organization of such activities does not require from us, adults, any specific technological skills. What we need is a sense of responsibility for the safety of children, faith in our agency and energy to act,"- Wojtasik added.

The initiatives can be organized throughout February. The best among the submitted initiatives can win attractive prizes from SID’s organizers and partners, which support the celebration of the event for many years now.

"The Orange Foundation once again supports Safer Internet Day. This year I would like to point to the fact safe Internet is hate free. Soon we will launch our campaign on this phenomenon. We intend to show that more of us stand for positives messages online," revealed Ewa Krupa, the president of the Orange Foundation, the Main Partner of the celebration.

"The Internet is a wonderful source of information, a learning tool and a window to the world. We should however use it in a conscious and safe manner," said Marcin Olender, Public Policies and Government Relations Manager for the CEE region at Google. "From the very start our company was guided by the principle that all actions should be implanted with care for privacy and security of the users. As the Internet develops, we continuously improve our security technology and privacy tools, build new products and conduct educational programs in order to help keep users and their families safe online," Olender added.

The Polish branch of Facebook has made available new educational materials on online safety as a part of SID.

"Library of Digital Education includes resources prepared for teachers, but also parents and guardians of youth between the ages of 11 and 18, intended for interactive classes and conversations regarding the development of skills necessary to navigate the digital world, receive information in a prudent way and create and share content. The educational materials of the Library were created on the basis of 10 years of research within the scope of the Youth and Media project implemented at the Harvard University,” explained Jakub Turowski, responsible for public policy in Poland and the Baltic States at Facebook.

All information concerning the SID celebrations are available at www.dbi.pl

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