Through support from the End Violence Fund and in partnership with Plan International, UNICEF Dominican Republic has released two new online educational platforms, E-mentores and E-pana. The purpose of these platforms is to keep children safe online as part of the Protection for Every Child Against Sexual Exploitation and Abuse project.
“We congratulate UNICEF Dominican Republic for the launch of the E-mentores and E-pana platforms,” said Miguel Garcia Egido, the Grant Management Specialist for End Violence’s Safe Online team. “UNICEF Dominican Repulblic was able to design these platforms in consultation with many different stakeholders, including national and regional actors, Fundación Paniamor and Plan International, and parents, teachers and children.”
As part of that process, E-mentores and E-pana provide modules for adolescents, teachers and parents alike. While E-mentores is geared toward adults and older children, E-pana is for those 12 years old or older. Through E-mentores, families and other caretakers can access key resources to keep children safe online. Through E-pana, adolescents can find information on the topic, along with tools to help them identify, prevent and report situations that place them at risk.
Through dissemination by public authorities, including the Ministry of Education, the Department of Supervision and Psychology, and others, UNICEF Dominican Republic plans to reach 9,000 individuals with these two platforms.
“An entertaining, straight-forward, and above all, didactic and user-friendly flow of information is a challenge for us when designing these platforms,” said Rosa Elcarte, UNICEF's representative in the Dominican Republic. “Thus, we are very pleased of our partnership with the Ministry of Education of the Dominican Republic, which will allow us to disseminate clear contents for the educational system to keep children safe online.”
These platforms were developed in partnership with the Dominican Republic’s Ministry of Education and Paniamor, another End Violence-supported civil society organisation in Costa Rica. As part of the larger Protection for Every Child project, UNICEF Dominican Republic is working with Plan International and other public authorities to implement a national response to children’s online safety, which is based on capacity building and training for children, the educational community, law enforcement, and the technology industry. All of these stakeholders are critical, as it is only through cohesive collaboration that we can truly keep children safe online.
This project builds on the Dominican Republic’s membership of the WePROTECT Global Alliance in 2018, which signalled the country’s commitment to preventing and responding to online child sexual exploitation and abuse.