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We #givewherewelive by sharing about online safety


What makes TELUS Day of Giving such an exceptional experience?

It comes back to the SHARING and CARING that we talk so much about, that we try to instill into the younger generation. This past May 31, I was lucky enough to be involved with TELUS as their employees gave back to their communities. Hence the hashtag #givewherewelive. It is amazing to know that more than 15,000 TELUS employees volunteer their time and give it back somehow. To me, that is truly where the heart is.

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In Vancouver, one of the TELUS Day of Giving events happened at TELUS World of Science. Members of the TELUS WISE (Wise Internet and Smartphone Education) program presented on Internet and social media safety. This particular event was unique in that participants in the presentation were TELUS employees with or without their children. The goal was to provide more awareness and knowledge in hopes that the information would be shared with even more people – within their families and communities and with their fellow colleagues who could not attend.

What exactly is TELUS WISE?  It’s a program that teaches and shares factual and important information about Internet safety that is useful to both children and their parents/caregivers.  Their website has many resources that are rich in information.  I was invited to speak at both their morning and afternoon sessions on cyberbullying and how it related to my daughter Amanda’s story.  Once again, the feedback and comments that I received were heartwarming and so very supportive.  Parents are like sponges for information as are their children in school. The audience was a mixture of the very young and those a little bit older. Nothing went unheard. I truly believe that all the information shared that day was absorbed and will be shared. The questions and responses ranged from stories to very meaningful questions and comments.

There was so much information to pack into 30 minutes that it was easy to forget what needed to be said. Luckily there were other presenters from TELUS WISE who had good information to share.

I can only hope that the young people in the audience took away valuable tidbits of information.

I believe the highlights of the presentations would include:

  • spend more family time together with technology turned off
  • get out the board games and cards
  • have distraction-free talk times and meal times
  • get photographs printed so they can be seen and shared
  • as a parent, learn what is on the digital playground to keep kids safe on it
  • parents should help their kids understand who the safe and trusted adults are in their lives to talk to if their parents aren’t available
  • collect bugs and rocks as a family to understand what ‘calm’ activities are
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It is wonderful to see a telecommunications company working so hard to give back to their community and to help protect young people who are growing up amidst technology they do not fully comprehend the power and dangers of. Education and awareness of Internet safety is necessary in today’s world.

Of course, there is always room for more ideas and more growth as technology continues to morph and change each week.  I applaud this company for making sure they continue to provide everyone interested with resources and tools to make the world a safer place.  Bravo TELUS!!!