Down To Zero

DtZ-SUFASEC Project Launch

Terre des Hommes Netherlands, in collaboration with Children of India Foundation and Thozhamai, inaugurated the DtZ-SUFASEC project on Preventing Online Sexual Exploitation of Children. The launch, held on May 3, 2023, at Vestin Park Hotel, Egmore Chennai, marked the beginning of a three-year action research initiative. The project aims to combat online sexual exploitation by partnering with government departments, NGOs, academic institutions, media experts, and various stakeholders. The tagline, "Responsible use of the Internet by all of us," encapsulates the program's focus.

Mr. Devaneyan Arasu, Director of Thozhamai, Chennai, welcomed speakers and participants. The inaugural address was given by Ms. A. S. Kumari, Chair of the Tamil Nadu State Commission for Women. The technical session featured insights from Mr. PM Nair IPS, Retd. DGP NDRF, and Cdr. Ashok VM Kumar Regional Vice President of International Justice Mission, emphasizing the growing challenge of child pornographic content. The plenary session engaged stakeholders, including students, parents, teachers, and experts, who shared opinions and suggestions.

The plenary session was facilitated by Prof. Andrew Sesuraj Public Policy Consultant, Tamil Nadu State Planning Commission, and Ms. Stegana Jency Director of Center for Child Rights and Development (CCRD) Various stakeholders, including students, parents, teachers, NGOs, Academicians, government departments, and media experts, share their opinions and offer suggestions for the project, including parenting guides, training sessions, and increasing awareness of children's responsible internet use.

Awareness on Safe Internet for Children among Parents and Teachers

On July 6, 2023, Thozhamai organized an orientation program on "Safe Internet for Children" at CSI Monahan Matriculation Higher Secondary School in Royapettah. The event, conducted in association with Children of India Foundation, featured Ms. Sugitha Sarangaraj, Digital Head of News7 Tamil Television Channel, as the chief guest. Over 60 parents and teachers participated, gaining insights into creating a secure online environment for children.

Orientation on Safe Internet for Children and Youth

Thozhamai, in collaboration with UNICEF on Campus of Stella Maris College, organized a Youth advocacy orientation on "Safe Internet for Children" on July 21, 2023. The event featured dignitaries such as Mr. Thangaperumal Ponpandi, Consultant County Manager of TdH Netherlands, and Mr. A. Devaneyan, Director of Thozhamai. The orientation aimed to engage youth in promoting a safer internet environment and included discussions on responsible internet usage.

Advisory Meeting on Preventing Online Child Sexual Exploitation

On July 21, 2023, an advisory meeting for the DtZ project was held at Hotel Vestin Park, Egmore, Chennai. Advisors from various sectors, including Mr. Thangaperumal Ponpandi, Mr. Subrat Kumar Panda, and Mr. A. Devaneyan, discussed issues related to children and the internet. Recommendations included educating children on internet safety through social media and forming an advisory committee for future endeavors.

Community Orientation on Safe Internet for Children

Thozhamai organized a community leadership program on August 17, 2023, at TNSCB Perumbakkam Community, Chennai. The program addressed child marriage and online safety, with guest speakers covering societal, legal, and internet safety aspects. Over 130 community members participated, gaining insights into protecting children from online threats.

Peer to Peer Leaders Session on Online Safety for Children

On August 26, 2023, Thozhamai conducted a Peer-Peer Leaders Capacity Building program at CSI.St.Ebba's Girls Higher Secondary School, Mylapore. The program focused on online safety and responsible internet use, engaging 34 students from 14 schools in Chennai. Discussions included technological advancements, online challenges faced by children, and strategies for recognizing and solving internet risks.

Awareness through Cultural Arts Form - Online Safety for Children

From September 7th to 9th, 2023, a conceptual street theatre awareness program on "Safe Internet for Children" was organized by TdH Netherlands, Children of India Foundation, and Thozhamai in Semmanchery and Perumbakkam communities. The program involved street plays, songs, and folklore, reaching over a thousand people and raising awareness about creating a safe online environment for children.

Training for NGO's & CBO's on Prevention of Online Child Sexual Exploitation

On September 15, 2023, TDH-Netherlands, CIF, and Thozhamai conducted a training program for NGOs and CBOs on the prevention of child sexual exploitation. The program covered topics such as understanding the internet, social media influence, and creating a secure online environment. Fifty-two representatives from 15 NGOs participated.

Training for Teachers on Prevention of Online Child Sexual Exploitation

On September 16, 2023, a training session for teachers on the prevention of online child sexual exploitation was organized by TDH-Netherlands, CIF, and Thozhamai. Renowned speakers covered essential online safety topics, including digital emergence, children's rights, and creating a safe online environment. Forty-five teachers from around 22 schools actively participated.

Inner House Training – Understanding of Youth Advocacy

On September 21, 2023, Thozhamai, in association with Terre des Hommes Netherlands and Children of India Foundation, conducted Inner House training for UOC members at Stella Maris College. The training focused on understanding youth advocacy action, preparing members for addressing and responding to the prevention of online child sexual exploitation.

National Consultation on Preventing Online Sexual Exploitation of Children

Terre des Hommes Netherlands and the Children of India Foundation hosted a National Level Consultation on September 26th and 27th, 2023. The event included tailored training for youth ambassadors, panel discussions on child protection mechanisms and the role of civil society, and multi-stakeholder planning. The consultation engaged youth advocates and civil society organizations, aiming to formulate recommendations to enhance policy and practices in addressing online sexual exploitation of children.