The Internet is the most common place where 13-17-year-old adolescents face bullying and other forms of violence, as the latest UNICEF study on violence against children proves. It is important for children and teenagers to know how to react in such situations and how to behave online in general.
The interactive children's exhibition "The Internet universe" worked in the National Library of Belarus since September 2018. Overall, more than 4,500 students visited it for free. Now MTS, the Ministry of Education and the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) will continue the project in the country's regions.
"The Internet universe" comprises six interactive zones, each of which explains a particular topic hands on. Children learn the history of the Internet, get acquainted with secure and vice versa, insecure content, learn to generate good complex passwords, deal with antiviruses and protect their personal information in social networks.
Also, teenagers join the quistionnaire on cyberbullying - harassment and violence online. The project organizers hope that the survey results will help assess the situation on cyberbullying among children and adolescents, as well as develop a strategy to combat it.
Although the exhibition is aimed primarily at children, it has also become popular among adults. Over 1,000 parents and teachers visited the event alongside with adolescents.
Seeing the enthusiasm about the project, the creators extended the exhibition several times - initially it was supposed to last until November.
“When we started the project, we believed that it would receive positive feedback, but we did not expect that much attention. During the first month of work, the exhibition was visited by more than 1000 students, it got widely highlighted in media and social networks. We are pleased to see such interest in "The Internet universe" and are grateful for the assistance of the National Library of Belarus. We will continue the project and hope that it will help realize one of the core goals of our company - to make innovations and technologies accessible and secure for children,” said Olga Tkachenko, Head of PR at MTS.
“Cyberspace opens up many opportunities for the development of a child - they can learn and communicate there. At the same time, it has risks and dangers that one should be able to withstand. Child's safety in the web is one of the rights proclaimed by the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child. We hope that having visited the exhibition, parents, teachers, and most importantly, children will more consciously and safely surf the Internet,” admitted Dr. Rashed Mustafa Sarwar, UNICEF Representative to Belarus.
After the huge success of the exhibition “The Internet Universe” in the capital city, the project will continue in other Belarusian cities and towns.
About the project
The interactive exhibition "The Internet universe" continues the project “Children on the Internet”, realized by MTS as part of an agreement with the Ministry of Education of the Republic of Belarus. During the project, more than 8,500 children and adolescents have been trained in secure behavior in the Internet. Lessons were held in all regions and many regional cities of Belarus.