State Secretary in the Ministry of Trade, Tourism and Telecommunications of the Government of the Republic of Serbia, Tatjana Matić, has stated that the National Contact Centre of Online Safety of Children will start operating on February 27.
At the conference on Safer Internet Day at the Science and Technology Park in Belgrade, Ms Matić has stressed that the work of the centre which will be coordinated by the Ministry of Trade, Tourism and Telecommunications, will also involve the Ministry of Interior, Ministry of Education, Science and Technological Development, Ministry of Health, Ministry of Labour, Employment Veteran and Social Policy and the Republic Prosecutor’s Office.
State Secretary has also stressed the importance of the cooperation with the civil sector, reminding that the Ministry of Trade, Tourism and Telecommunication has supported 71 projects this year for development of the information society, out of which 20 on online safety of children.
“Programmes conducted by these organisations and the data they generate are greatly precious for us. Two organisations have presented their projects in the media these days, Foundation “Tijana Jurić” and Centre for improving culture of life and work – ŽIR”, where we could hear that every third primary school pupil is a victim of online violence, and that every fourth girl is ready to meet up with a person she knows only online, and that only 12 per cent of secondary school pupils are familiar with the risks of using the Internet”, Ms Tatjana Matić has warned.
“These disturbing data are an additional reason for us to keep on with the joint efforts for improving the online safety and protection of children, with developing their digital literacy. It is not enough for them to have only IT science at school, but that the curriculum of that subject should be in line with the needs of modern times”, State Secretary has concluded.
At the ceremonial opening of the conference Ms Snežana Marković, Assistant Minister for IT technologies in the Ministry of Education, Science and Technological Development, and Ms Gordana Danilović Grković, Director of the Science and Technology Centre of Belgrade talked about this topic.
The conference on the International Safer Internet Day, held on February 7, organised by the Ministry of Trade, Tourism and Telecommunications, in cooperation with the Ministry of Education, Science and Technological Development, has gathered the representatives of state administration involved in the launching of the National Contact Centre for Online Safety of Children, and non-government organisations which projects have been approved in the Public Call of the Ministry of Trade, Tourism and Telecommunications for granting funds for IT society development programmes.
Participants have presented the programmes and activities for increasing online safety of children and development of digital literacy, in line with this year’s message for the Safer Internet Day – “Be a change: unite for a better Internet”, and a media campaign for online safety of children has been presented.
Three panels have been presented on the following topics: “National Contact Centre for Online Safety of Children – an institutional platform for raising the level of protection and safety of children when using the information and communication technologies”, “Education and prevention activities in the field of protection and safety of children on the Internet through a video format as a means for reaching a large number of children, parents and teachers: Civic initiatives and media actions”; and the “Direct education and raising of digital competences for strengthening of safety culture and active and creative use of information and communication technologies: Civic initiatives and networking”.