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We at Telenor believes that the mobile connectivity can help transform the lives of individuals- providing access to knowledge, financial services and making health services affordable and accessible for all. From this, societies are empowered to grow and progress.It has become a catalyst for change and growth – for individuals and for society at large. Making those benefits accessible to a wider audience is one of Telenor’s key objectives. By enabling access to services like affordable voice and Internet , or allowing for financial inclusion or access to knowledge, we have been creating shared value.
For the millions first-time users and young children, this 21st century Internet opens the doors to fantastic vaults of information and learning. but also to risks of online theft, fraud, bullying, abuse and malware.
A Telenor BCG report disclosed some important observations on the negative impact that this easy access to the Internet can have on children. The Report estimated that over half a billion kids in Telenor markets alone will be using the Internet in the coming years. Among the 12 countries studied, Indian children face the worst risk due to the combination of high access to mobile phones and low resilience due to lack of formal or informal counsel available to create awareness or control over their internet activity.
In response to this, Telenor India conceptualized a school outreach program aimed at creating awareness on Internet safety amongst children and helping parents to monitor and educate their kids about Internet safety. The program named WebWise was started in February 2014 with Telenor volunteers reaching out to schools and parents to run Internet safety workshops for children.
The first phase of WebWise was successful in building cyber resilience amongst 15,000 children. The drive continues in 2015 with even higher ambition of empowering more and more kids around us.
Through research it was revealed that the plight of women and the inequality they face in other walks of life is also prevalent in the use of mobile phones. As per research conducted by GFK in certain parts of UP it was reflected that only 27% women own a mobile against 79% men in the same area.
From time to time, social dogmas and diktats have further discouraged the use of mobile phone amongst women by prominent and influential members of the community, panchayats or local government representatives. To break these barriers and create awareness on the benefits of women using phones, Telenor
started the ‘Mera Mobile Mera Sethi’ initiative, which aims to address the issue of mobile gender gap and to spread the mobile-based awareness in rural areas. This awareness drive, which includes street plays, competitions among school kids, debates, events and rallies spread the message among women on how a phone can improve their social and economic status and can help them stay connected, better informed and feel empowered by spreading the message - “my phone my companion”.