The Latvian Safer Internet Centre received the Cross of Recognition from the state

On 4 May 2023 - the day of the restoration of the independence of the Republic of Latvia, the coordinator of the Latvian Safer Internet Centre (SIC) Maija Katkovska received the highest award of the Latvian state - the Cross of Recognition – for raising awareness about internet safety and media literacy for children in Latvia, and ensuring the work of the hotline fighting Child Sexual Abuse Material (CSAM) online. The award was presented by the President of Latvia.

Date 2023-08-08 Author Latvian Safer Internet Centre Section awareness Topic media literacy/education Audience media specialist, organisations and industry, research, policy and decision makers
Maija Katkovska, the head of the Latvian Safer Internet Centre, receiving the cross from the President of Latvia

The Latvian SIC has been operating since 2006 under the Secretariat of the Special Assignments Minister for Electronic Government Affairs, and later the Latvian Internet Association took over the coordination of the SIC work. 

I am very grateful and honoured to receive the Cross of Recognition. In the work of the Latvian Safer Internet Centre, the most rewarding moments are when we are able to help someone who has been harmed on the internet, in particular by defending children's rights and ensuring children's safety on the internet. Recognition and praise from teachers also motivate us to continue the qualitative educational work. I share this recognition with my colleagues who are also passionate and proud about what we do. We are happy to have the opportunity to work for our country. This award gives us an additional motivation to continue our efforts, energy and forces to implement new ideas and to achieve higher goals

 Maija Katkovska, the head of the Latvian Safer Internet Centre, emphasised.

The Latvian Safer Internet Centre has:

  • developed more than 300 different educational materials;
  • developed educational videos, which are available on the SIC YouTube channel;
  • trained 55 voluntary Safer Internet Ambassadors all over Latvia. They, in turn, have trained more than 30,000 pupils in their regions;
  • organised for 16 years in a row the Safer Internet Day celebrations in Latvia, as well as related activities and social campaigns; 
  • organised more than 200 lectures and workshops every year for children and the youth on various topics related to internet safety in schools all over Latvia;
  • organised every year more than 30 training seminars on the internet safety and media literacy for adults: teachers, educators, librarians, social pedagogues, police officers, etc;
  • ensured the work of the hotline, which has received 49,222 reports about illegal and harmful internet content and problematic situations in the online environment;
  • every month, the educational and informational materials developed by the Centre are downloaded 9,000 times on the average from the SIC website;
  • the SIC website also reaches about 70,000 unique visitors per year
  • every year, there are more than 250 publications in the media covering the activities of the Centre, as well as interviews on TV, radio and news portals on various topics related to internet safety.

According to the decision of the President and the Chapter of Orders of 4 April 2023, 104 representatives of the society were awarded the highest Latvian state awards - the Order of Three Stars, the Order of Viesturs and the Cross of Recognition. The highest awards of the Latvian state are given to people whose honest work, active civic stance, self-sacrifice, courage and patriotism strengthen Latvia as a democratic, legal and national state.

The Cross of Recognition is awarded for outstanding love of the country and for special merit in national, social, cultural, scientific, sporting and educational work. Meritorious service includes faithful and diligent service in the state or local government service, exemplary and honest performance of work, any public service, development of the national spirit, self-activity and economic forces.

Find more information about the work of the Latvian Safer Internet Centre, including their awareness raising, helpline, hotline, and youth participation services – or find similar information for Safer Internet Centres throughout Europe.    

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