Safer Internet Centre plus (SIC+)
A key aim of the Insafe and INHOPE networks is to share good practice in creating a safer and better internet for children and young people. In previous funding cycles, under both the Safer Internet Programme and the Connecting Europe Facility (CEF), European Schoolnet (EUN) (coordinator of the Insafe network) and INHOPE (the International Association of Internet Hotlines) have established good contacts and close collaboration with European neighbouring countries and third countries.
Previous initiatives include the Expert Exchange Scheme (EES) which was designed to promote the exchange of good practice and experience in the field of online safety between the European network of Safer Internet Centres (operating as part of the joint Insafe-INHOPE network) and interested organisations from outside of the EU. Other outreach actions, more generally, have included global Safer Internet Day (SID) campaigning through relationships established with SID Committees and Supporters, and as part of INHOPE global membership outreach.
As part of the Better Internet for Kids (BIK) Phase 2 project, EUN started planning and developing a concept for the Safer Internet Centre+ (SIC+) pilot programme which resulted in a best-practice guideline (BPG) titled “Learning from SIC collaborations with non-EU organisations to build a roadmap for a SIC+ pilot programme”, published in March 2019. The guideline built towards a rational behind, and format for, a SIC+ pilot programme. On the one hand, it presented an overview of existing partnerships and collaborations, in particular between Safer Internet Centres (SICs) and organisations from outside the European Union (EU/EEA) also working in the field of child online safety. On the other hand, it explored possible ways of further stimulating knowledge and expertise exchanges with third-country organisations.
Within BIK Phase 3, EUN and INHOPE jointly rolled out a SIC+ pilot programme, the overall aim of which was defined as:
- To foster knowledge sharing and capacity building on successful initiatives on online safety for children and young people, at regional and/or global level.
- To promote the development and implementation of innovative actions to increase the participation of third-country organisations in online safety initiatives and best practices, in particular education programmes and awareness-raising campaigns, as well as helpline and hotline services, while identifying possible areas for exchange and mutual learning.
- To address common challenges in the field of online safety for children and young people by promoting cooperation with the current Insafe-INHOPE network, aiming for a closer integration of these initiatives in global actions.
More specifically, it was envisioned that the SIC+ pilot programme would take the form of a bursary scheme, offering funding for up to 15 representatives from organisations promoting online safety to children in neighbouring countries, in countries benefiting from an EU pre-accession strategy, or in third countries.
Various approaches were used to define a target set of countries to invite to take part in the pilot programme, building on previous phases of scoping work within the framework of the Better Internet for Kids project. Based on further discussions between the Insafe and INHOPE Coordination Teams, including consultations and input from Safer Internet Centre representatives, the following eight organisations were invited to participate in a yearlong capacity-building programme:
- Armenia: Media Education Center/STEM Society (Safer Internet Armenia)
- Bolivia: Fundación REDES/Red TIC Bolivia
- Bosnia and Herzegovina: International Forum of Solidarity – EMMAUS (IFSEMMAUS)
- Brazil: SaferNet Brasil
- Colombia: Red PaPaz/Te Protejo
- Mexico: Fundación PAS
- Serbia: Ministry of Trade of Tourism and Telecommunications – National Contact Center for Child Safety on the Internet (Tijana Juric Foundation)
- Ukraine: Better Internet Centre