Over the last fifteen years or more we have seen rapid development and exponential growth in the use of electronic, computer-based communication and information sharing via the Internet. Whilst this has brought about great opportunities for learning and communication, it has also presented us with new challenges and risks when working to protect the most vulnerable in our society, namely children.
Of particular concern is the increased opportunities for the sexual abuse and sexual exploitation of children and children's increased access to offensive and/or age-inappropriate material through the Internet.
The Marie Collins Foundation is recognised as one of the “case study/best practice” organisations in relation to meeting the recovery needs of children sexually abused and exploited online. As a result of our experience of working in this field, we have developed models for intervention in various online sexually abusive cases. We want to share our knowledge and expertise with others. We also want to learn from others
The Global Protection Online Network is the vehicle through which we can work in partnership with all countries in an effort to ensure that all children, wherever they live, are able to recover and live safe and fulfilling lives in the aftermath of being sexually abused and exploited online. The MCF holds the belief that no one agency has all the answers but, by working together and learning from one another, we will be in a better position to ensure the safety of all children
Through the Global Protection Online Network, we will build our collective capacity to tackle online sexual abuse and exploitation of children by:
- The sharing of good practice
- Accessing research into “what works” when helping children in their recovery from online abuse
- Accessing help with difficult practice issues