Safeguarding event hears from online safety experts

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Safeguarding event hears from online safety experts

This year’s annual Diocese of East Anglia safeguarding event saw Parish Safeguarding Representatives and other delegates from across the diocese gather at Wymondham to share experiences; to listen to safeguarding experts and to pray together. Rebecca Bretherton reports.

The Two Johns from EST Safety Training gave a very informative presentation on the Dangers of Strangers online for children using the internet. They emphasized how, as the digital world changes so quickly, parents are often unaware of the risks that children are exposed to when gaming or chatting online. They explained the increasing impact of social media influencers on young people’s lives and gave tips for digital wellbeing.

Steve Ashley, CEO of the Catholic Safeguarding Standards Agency (CSSA) joined the delegates and explained that the CSSA was created to provide a regulatory body for the Catholic Church’s safeguarding work. He reviewed the Diocese of East Anglia’s recent safeguarding audit by CSSA which was awarded a Comprehensive  Assurance grade and thanked everyone who had supported this achievement.

Throughout the day, victims and survivors of abuse were remembered in prayer and at Mass prayers were offered for the Parish Safeguarding Representatives and everyone working to keep our parish communities safe.

Simon from Sheringham and Cromer parish summed up the day: “A really stimulating, thought-provoking, supportive and informative day – I found the input in relation to safeguarding young people in an online context to be especially helpful. It highlighted the need for fresh thinking when it comes to how we can all best provide protection and support. We enjoyed a wonderful Mass celebrated by Bishop Peter, as well as sharing some lovely food and drinks.   I think I can speak for the others when I say that we felt both valued and encouraged in our roles as parish safeguarding representatives.”

EST eSafety:

Diocese of East Anglia CSSA Audit.

Pictured top are the Two Johns giving their online dangers for children presentation and, below, event attendees with Bishop Peter Collins.