The Education Ministry and APLE Cambodia are urging parents to closely watch children’s internet usage in a bid to create a safer online environment for young people in the Kingdom.
APLE, the National Committee for Counter Trafficking and the Education Ministry yesterday joined forces to promote safe and positive internet usage during a “Safer Internet Day” campaign held in Phnom Penh.
It was part of an event called “Together for a Better Internet” and about 600 people attended.
“We’re proud to host the Safer Internet Day event this year in collaboration with the high-level national government bodies mandated with a responsibility to protect children,” Seila Samleang, executive director of APLE, said. “In addition to what we do every day to end online crimes against children, we support the Safer Internet Day’s annual global campaign to raise awareness of internet safety.”
APLE said in a statement yesterday that everyone has a responsibility to ensure children are respectful when interacting with others online, while parents and teachers must guide children on safe internet usage.
“Government officials must also take the lead by ensuring the safety and wellbeing of children and young people through effective child protection strategies for the digital world,” it said.
Chou Bun Eng, vice-chair of the NCCT, said irresponsible internet use could have negative consequences among young people. Ms Bun Eng said the government has to promote safe internet usage in society.
“Countries around the world are paying attention to these issues by meeting regularly, discussing skills and techniques and preparing to come up with a common policy for preventive measures,” she said.
Ms Bun Eng said parents and teachers play a vital role in educating children on how to use technology responsibly.
“Some people are addicted to social media – sometimes they are online while forgetting to eat rice and drink water,” Som Vichini, 16, a teenager at the event said yesterday.
Ms Vichini added that even though the internet can help students conduct research, the online world can be negatively used.
“Parents must pay attention to their children’s internet usage,” she said. “We are also appealing to the youth not to use the internet the wrong way because there are dangerous risks involving scams and human trafficking.”