Today is Safer Internet Day (SID) 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 organisations 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.
“We’re pleased with our partnership with Facebook for Safer Internet day to raise awareness and have conversations about staying safe online,” says Felix Bidemi Iziomoh, Executive Director at ICLDING. “We are proud to play a role in uniting our community for a better internet.”
“The 2017 theme for the Safer Internet Day ‘Be the change: unite for a better internet’ resonates strongly with the Federal Government of Nigeria’s campaign, ‘The change begins with me’,” says Adeyemi Odutola, Communications Officer at Women’s Technology Empowerment Centre (W.TEC). “We are excited to partner with Facebook to host a day of workshops and fun activities for secondary students, where they will learn how to navigate the Internet confidently and safely.”