A new initiative, “Beat the CyberBully”, has been launched in Dubai to provide education, awareness and training on the subjects of online and mobile usage among children and young people. Beat The CyberBully helps to reduce online vulnerability and build digital resilience among children and young people who are confident with technology but not yet emotionally equipped to deal with the potential negative experiences in a public environment. With over 15 years of experience in the digital landscape, the evidence-based research and international experience that the Beat The CyberBully team bring to the UAE also serves to support, educate and increase awareness among parents, carers and teaching professionals.
The program aims to promote safe, responsible and inspiring online communications for children and young people, and to bridge the digital knowledge gap for teachers, parents and carers. The workshops include “Making good choices online” for children, “Online reputation: Maximizing lifestyle and employability via the web” for young people, and “Keep up with your child online” for parents and carers. Private talks can also be arranged for community groups and schools.
The launch of the campaign comes as more and more children and young people in today’s hyper-connected society suffer the devastating consequences of online and mobile misuse. Alarmingly, according to recent research from beatbullying.org, 81% of young people agree that bullying online is easier to get away with than bullying in person, and 80% believe it is easier to hide online bullying from parents than face-to-face bullying. At the same time, one in four relationships now begin online and 90% of recruiters check applicants out online, with 50% screening out applicants based on information posted online.