Football clubs : a surprising partner in raising awareness about online safety

  • Awareness
  • 30/01/2018
  • Belgian Safer Internet Centre

At the RSCA Anderlecht football club youngsters get more than just a sports training. The club attaches great importance to other aspects of their teenager members' lives. One of these aspects is their safety online: as future football stars, knowing how to present oneself online, is key to future success. 

Since 2015, the RSCA, Child Focus (the Belgian Safer Internet Centre and the Center for Missing and Sexually Exploited Children), and Proximus, a telecomm provider, have collaborated to offer youngsters tips and tools for them to adopt appropriate online behavior. This training took place during a summer camp, in which participants were divided in two age groups.

For the youngest, aged between 12 and 14 years, the activity took place as an interactive online quiz to which they could answer directly from their mobile phones. This quiz addressed most of the main online safety issues teenagers are confronted with: from privacy settings on social media to sexting, cyber-bullying and more.

The second group, consisting of youngsters aged between 14 to 17 years, saw the theatre play "Sex Thing", in which the audience is treated as offenders. The show focuses on showing the possible consequences of sexting i.e. sending nude or sexual photos via social media. This practice becomes particularly risky if the couple who sent these intimate photos breaks up and one partner decided to take revenge on the other, by publishing the explicit pictures they received from their ex partner. The theatre play was performed in Dutch with French subtitles (courtesy of Proximus), followed by a discussion about sharing intimate pictures of someone else.

The RSCA considered this collaboration with the Belgian Safer Internet Day to be of great importance for its rising football stars.

Find out more about the work of the Belgian Safer Internet Centre, including its awareness raising, helpline, hotline and youth participation services.


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