Voda­fone Qatar en­gages com­mu­nity in dig­i­tal safety pro­gramme

Gulf Times - - QATAR -

Voda­fone Qatar marked World Men­tal Health Day 2018 by en­gag­ing the com­mu­nity in the com­pany’s long-run­ning pro­gramme, AmanTECH, de­signed to equip chil­dren and par­ents with the right tools to nav­i­gate the dig­i­tal world safely.

World Men­tal Health Day is ob­served on Oc­to­ber 10 ev­ery year with the over­all ob­jec­tive of rais­ing aware­ness of men­tal health is­sues around the world and mo­bil­is­ing ef­forts in sup­port of men­tal health. The topic for this year is ‘Young Peo­ple and Men­tal Health in a Chang­ing World’.

Qatar Na­tional Li­brary played host to a se­ries of events this week­end that raised aware­ness about men­tal health is­sues that were or­gan­ised in part­ner­ship with the Min­istry of Pub­lic Health, Min­istry of In­te­rior, Pri­mary Health Care Cor­po­ra­tion and Voda­fone Qatar.

AmanTECH’s booth en­gaged many chil­dren and par­ents with a num­ber of ac­tiv­i­ties that re­quired them to per­form tasks re­lated to safety on­line in which they learnt spe­cific skills, in­clud­ing iden­ti­fy­ing fake vs real news, safe on­line gam­ing, self-im­age and rep­u­ta­tion on­line, Voda­fone Qatar said in a state­ment.

Voda­fone Qatar brand am­bas­sador and Al Rayyan TV pre­sen­ter Saoud alMaadeed par­tic­i­pated in the fake news ac­tiv­ity and dis­cussed with the chil­dren whether or not they should be­lieve ev­ery­thing they hear or see on­line and how it is im­por­tant to look into an ar­ti­cle or a video’s au­then­tic­ity be­fore shar­ing it.

“The ex­pand­ing use of on­line tech­nolo­gies, while un­doubt­edly bring­ing many ben­e­fits, can also bring sig­nif­i­cant pres­sures that have a di­rect ef­fect on young peo­ples’ men­tal health. We know from our work in the field of dig­i­tal safety that chil­dren in Qatar spend a con­sid­er­able amount of time on­line, many of whom are be­ing ex­posed to cy­ber bul­ly­ing, neg­a­tive self-im­age and neg­a­tive in­flu­ences. It is there­fore vi­tal that par­ents are equipped with the right un­der­stand­ing for how to keep their chil­dren safe in the dig­i­tal world and to have an open di­a­logue with their chil­dren about these mat­ters,” Voda­fone Qatar said.

“Since AmanTECH’s launch in 2014, we have ac­tively en­gaged chil­dren on the topic of on­line safety at pub­lic events and with fun and in­ter­ac­tive work­shops held at their schools. This has been in­cred­i­bly suc­cess­ful and we are com­mit­ted to con­tinue work­ing to en­sure chil­dren are given the op­por­tu­nity to make the most of com­mu­ni­ca­tion tech­nolo­gies for their de­vel­op­ment while also in­still­ing healthy and safe on­line habits,” it added.

The AmanTECH pro­gramme in­cludes on­go­ing work­shops, an on­line source for in­for­ma­tion and tips for par­ents ac­ces­si­ble at www.voda­fone. qa/AmanTECH

Chil­dren and par­ents tak­ing part in an ac­tiv­ity at the AmanTECH booth.

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