When it comes to using the Internet, the old adage rings true: “education is the key to success.” It provides endless resources, ways to stay connected and share information. At the same time we need to ensure that we are participating in this digital world safely. At TELUS saw the growing need to educate Canadians of all ages how to keep themselves, their families and communities safe online. So in an effort to help Canadians have positive experiences online, we launched TELUS WISE (Wise Internet and Smartphone Education), nationally in 2013, a free program offering in-person workshops and a wealth of multimedia resources for Canadians of all ages. Ultimately, TELUS WISE is all about empowering Canadians of all ages, from kids to young adults, parents to seniors, on how to embrace being part of our digital society, in a safe and positive way.
Nearly three years later, TELUS WISE has reached more than 1 million Canadians! Through public sessions, social media and our multi-media educational resources, TELUS WISE is designed to pull Canadians into a conversation about online safety in a positive manner. Through TELUS WISE, parents, teachers, students, youth and seniors have access to information on how to practice good online habits while keeping the lines of communications open. Through our Footprint program, children can learn how to keep their digital footprint clean at an early age. Teens and young adults can learn how to protect and positively grow their online reputation through our In Control resources and parents can learn how to talk to their kids about how to safely engage in social media or safely intervene when they witness cyberbullying with resources like raising e-(empathetic) citizens.
As we look ahead, we’re laser focused on engaging even more Canadians with TELUS WISE. This year, we are introducing new elements to the program including resources for seniors. We’re also training high school and post-secondary students to become TELUS WISE Youth Ambassadors who will host TELUS WISE Footprint, In Control and senior sessions in their local communities. We will continue to work with our partners on more informative and helpful resources, including cyberbullying intervention tools in partnership with MediaSmarts to help educate youth and adults on how to stand up to cyberbullying safely.
A special thank you to our passionate TELUS WISE Ambassadors, comprised of more than 150 TELUS team members, who have volunteered their time to host sessions in their communities across the country in addition to our Learning Centres Experts who provide TELUS WISE training sessions.
We’re also very thankful to work with our amazing partners including Amanda Todd Legacy, Bullying.org, CACP (Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police), Hockey Canada, MediaSmarts, PREVNet among others! They have provided us with tremendous support over the years, helping us build our programs and provide their expertise on digital literacy, cyberbullying, and cybersecurity and providing tremendous value to TELUS WISE overall.
Helping keep Canadians safe online is a priority for us. Our hope is to help as many Canadians as possible, giving them with the tools and resources they need to protect themselves and their families online while creating a meaningful dialogue around Internet and smartphone safety.
Here’s to the next million!