Boys & Girls Club Poster Contest Promotes Internet Safety
Today’s teenagers have never known a world without the Internet or digital devices.
With 95 percent of teens having an online presence, many of whom are on social media outlets, parents and educators are challenged with raising responsible digital citizens in a world that didn’t exist 10 years ago. The Boys & Girls Club of Green Bay responded this year with its Internet Safety Summer Initiative.
“For our club members, sharing personal information and details of their lives through technology is the norm. It’s important to stress that risky online behavior poses serious dangers.” said Johanna Wicklund, director of program development. “Internet Safety Month is an opportunity to educate youth and parents about how to stay connected without putting their safety at risk.”
Club members participated in programming that helped them understand how to use digital media safely and why it matters. Members learned about protecting their identities, creating passwords, and using safe websites. To showcase their learning, members participated in a poster-making contest and created board games with Internet safety-related material as inspiration.
The Boys & Girls Club turned the event into a Family Day to celebrate summer along with online safety. The event included music, face painting, a bounce house, outdoor games, and food. At the event sponsored by Sprint, community members, staff and club members had the opportunity to vote for the poster contest winners.
More than 300 attended, including 190 Boys & Girls Club members. Participants took an Internet and online media safety quiz administered by teens who had participated throughout Internet & Media Safety Month.
There were six poster finalists, and 11-year-old Kendra designed the winning poster. Prizes were given for participation, including a Samsung Galaxy tablet for the poster contest winner, headphones for kids and teens, gift cards for parents and teens, and a Buffalo Wild Wings party for five for one lucky family, and BWW gift cards for volunteers and attendees
What they learned
“Keep all personal information to yourself. That means your address, phone number, and school.” — Emily, Age 9
“It’s OK to tell an adult and make sure your parents know the websites you visit online” — Emmanuel, Age 7
“Passwords are to protect you and it is important to make them hard and keep them a secret…like the passwords rap we learned.” — Jackson, Age 8
“You should never meet someone from online, it can be dangerous because you don’t know who you will meet. It is also important to tell an adult what you are doing online so they can help you stay safe.” — Alexis, Age 14
— Ashley Noel is marketing and stewardship coordinator for the Boys & Girls Club of Green Bay.
Boys & Girls Clubs of America partners with Sprint to open the lines of communication about Internet and media safety between young people and the adults who care for them.
Parents, teens, educators and the community can access free tools and resources at 4netsafety.com and learn more about how to help young people navigate safely. BGCA also offers older members advice, tips and interactive activities and contests on their teen-centric website myclubmylife.com.