Foundation launches its new eSmart Digital Licence Scholarship

in Press Releases

Media Release - Tuesday 11 October, 2016

The digital world has become an exciting and informative place. But while the internet has delivered endless possibilities it has also left people open to scams, bullying and abuse – with children especially exposed.

With one in seven Australian children being the victim of cyber bullying, many in the community are asking what can be done to keep kids safe.

The Alannah & Madeline Foundation’s Digital Licence teaches children critical digital skills and promotes discussion about online safety between young people and their parents, carers and teachers.

Presently, more than 200,000 Australian students are using the program but there are still thousands more who can also benefit from it. To help us reach more children, the Foundation is excited to launch a new Digital Licence Scholarship so that businesses and individuals can support their local students.

This initiative will provide scholarship packages which range between $1,000 and $10,000-plus and include benefits for both schools and businesses.

The Alannah & Madeline Foundation CEO Lesley Podesta stressed that every child is at risk in the digital world and the scholarships would help ensure that no child was left disadvantaged.

Ms Podesta said the Foundation worked alongside the Office of the Children’s eSafety Commissioner, which this week released figures highlighting a rise in the number of cyber bullying complaints it received during the past three months.

“All children deserve to live in a safe and supportive environment where technology is embraced and their risk of cyber bullying is reduced,” Ms Podesta said.

“We know that 77 per cent of parents are worried about their children online and one in seven children experience cyber bullying.

"This is a way community minded individuals, businesses and local representatives can help keep kids safe online. They are a direct investment in the skills of our young people.

“Providing a scholarship to a school allows a business to be involved in a child’s education in what is now an essential part of any curriculum.”

The Alannah & Madeline Foundation Head of Digital Darcy Cameron said feedback from the more than 2,000 schools using the eSmart Digital Licence had been resoundingly positive. Ms Cameron said packages could be tailored to suit the needs of individual schools.

“We hope that after using the essential resource all children will be able to navigate the digital world in a smart, safe and responsible way,” Ms Cameron said.

The eSmart Digital Licence Scholarship can be donated by any individual, organisation or community group.

For information on the different packages available please go to digitallicence.com.au/cybersafety-scholarships.

Media inquiries contact Adrian Bernecich: 0416 045 701 or adrian.bernecich@amf.org.au.

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