PCC publishes evaluation of £100K stay safe online fund

A £100,000 fund to keep young people safe from digital threats has reached over 10,000 school-age children in the county.
On Safer Internet Day (Tuesday 11 February), Suffolk Police and Crime Commissioner Tim Passmore, reports how his £100,000 PCC fund has improved internet safety for children across Suffolk and advised parents and carers what to look out for to protect their children.
Eleven organisations successfully secured a significant share of the PCC’s Stay Safe Online Fund for the last school year and the evaluation of this fund has now been published. A variety of projects were funded to support a wide range of age-groups often working with parents and grandparents too. The South West Grid for Learning Trust, Access Community Trust, Level Two, Ipswich Community Media, Bangladeshi Support Centre, Suffolk Refugee, The Friends of St Mary’s School, The Porch Project, Guardian Saints and Kernos all benefitted from the fund set aside by Suffolk’s PCC to combat this growing issue.
Tim Passmore, Suffolk’s Police and Crime Commissioner said, ““Keeping Suffolk’s young people safe online is massively important – the internet has huge benefits but it can also pose huge dangers.
“Sadly, it is a growing problem and these threats need to be tackled now. I have pledged to do all I can to protect young people in the county and that is why I set aside £100K from my commissioning budget to support organisations working with young people right across the county.
“The feedback we have received from the various projects has been very positive. I visited some of the initiatives and found them extremely powerful.”
“R is a female aged 11 years old. She scores more than two Adverse Childhood Experiences, has English as an additional language, lives in a deprived area of Ipswich and attends a school where most children have English as an additional language. R took part in the Stay Safe Online programme, during one of our sessions she stated that she uses the internet to access dating websites. Before taking part in the programme, R was unaware of the many dangers she could face online and even more so by using these websites/apps. After completing the workshop, R understood the dangers and how easily children can be groomed or face abuse online and was determined to be more cautious online and not use dating websites.”
The fund, which was administered by Suffolk Community Foundation, was open to charities and community groups who work with young people in the county to support cyber safety projects.
The successful recipients of the fund were:
Volunteering Matters £16,446 to deliver online safety sessions with children in years 5 and 6 in partnership with six schools.
• The South West Grid for Learning Trust £10,000 to promote the use of the 360 degree safe Online Safety Self Review tool among schools in Suffolk.
Access Community Trust £9,400 to create a piece of theatre for presentation in schools which focuses on online safety, based in Lowestoft.
Level Two £5,875.48 to educate young people, parents, grandparents and carers in E-Safety in order to protect young people vulnerable to cybercrime, based in Felixstowe.
Ipswich Community Media £9,910 to train staff to support young people with online safety.
Bangladeshi Support Centre £10,500 for online Safety Awareness sessions for children and parents from BME communities.
Suffolk Refugee Support £7,035 to work with asylum seekers and refugees to teach the importance of internet safety.
Friends of St Mary’s School £1,818 to fund e-safety training sessions for children, parents and teachers, alongside a peer-to-peer e-safety programme called Digital Leaders, based in Woodbridge.
Porch Project £5,040 to train staff to deliver online safety workshops at schools and within drop-in sessions, based in Hadleigh & Great Cornard.
Guardian Saints £10,000 to deliver a series of 25 Online Safety Awareness workshops for foster carers.
Kernos £10,291 to work in partnership with 10 local primary schools to raise awareness and educate children and young people around online safety, based in Sudbury.

Caption: Tim Passmore at St Mary’s School, Woodbridge. The school received £1,818 to fund e-safety training sessions for children, parents and teachers, alongside a peer-to-peer e-safety programme called Digital Leaders