Safer Internet Day (SID) was celebrated on the 7th February, and Facebook has launched a series of initiatives to help make the Internet a safer and better place for people across Africa, especially children, and the youth. Facebook is partnering with public sector agencies and non-governmental organizations from across Africa under the rallying call “Be the change: unite for a better Internet”.
“Nothing is more important to us than the safety of the people who use Facebook. Every day people come to Facebook to connect with people and issues they care about, and they should be able to do so in a safe, secure environment,” says Akua Gyekye, Public Policy Manager Facebook, Africa.
Facebook builds products that empower the community to stay in control, support each other during crises and stay safe online. Every Facebook product has privacy and security built into it to protect your information.
Over 100 countries are participating in an effort to start conversations and help people think about the small steps they can take to stay safe online. The initiative is coordinated by the joint Insafe/INHOPE network, with the support of the European Commission, and national Safer Internet Centres across Europe and beyond.
In Africa, Facebook is working with partners such as: Watoto Watch in Kenya, the International Center for Leadership Development and the Women’s Technology Empowerment Centre in Nigeria, South Africa’s Film and Publication Board, JOXAfrica Association in Senegal, Tech Women Zimbabwe as well as J Initiative and Ghana Internet Safety Foundation from Ghana to ensure the safety and education of their communities and address the needs of vulnerable people.
Facebook is providing financial and marketing support for them to use to raise awareness about online safety. Facebook is also hosting an event in Johannesburg, South Africa, and Nairobi, Kenya to promote the importance of online safety to students, teachers, parents, and policymakers.
“The Internet brings offers great opportunities for Kenya’s youth and children. This year’s Safer Internet Day gives young people the opportunity to voice their views on how to make the internet better,” says Lillian Kariuki, executive director at Watoto Watch Network.
Everyone has a part to play
Gyekye says: “This is an opportunity to explore the role we all play in helping to create a better and safer online community. We are proud to work with young people, parents, carers, teachers, social workers, law enforcement, companies, and policymakers to create a better Internet.”
Facebook has redesigned its Safety Center, an engaging resource to help people get the information they need about controlling their information and staying safe. It walks you through the tools Facebook offers to control your experience as well as numerous tips and resources for safe and secure sharing. It is available in over 50 languages, is mobile friendly and includes step-by-step videos