6th of February: Safer Internet Day

07 February 2024


Athens, 7 February 2024

6th of February: Safer Internet Day

Educational, Preventive & Recreational Activities at the Educational Center of "The Smile of the Child" in Koropi

On the occasion of Safer Internet Day on Tuesday, February 6th, "The Smile of the Child" held a Press Conference at its Educational Centre in Koropi, in the presence of students from primary and secondary schools, teachers and journalists.

  • An online survey was conducted by students-volunteers of the European Student Voluntary Network "YouSmile" and members of the Child Rights Group of the Organization, on the dangers of surfing on the Internet
  • Actions and services of the Organization’s Center for Online Safety, aimed at preventing and responding to incidents, as well as the relevant statistics
  • A new and innovative educational tool, created in collaboration with the Department of Primary Education of the University of Crete, namely, the "The Centre of Continuing Education and Lifelong Learning European Distance and E-Learning Network (EDEN)", which will be implemented starting on the 6th of February.

Watch the Press Conference here: https://www.youtube.com/live/Xiibj_eLxKI?si=pPGilb2lNAGNvCxV

The press conference was organized in the framework of Educational, Preventive & Recreational Activities, where 542 students participated, under the coordination of Smile’s specialized team of psychologists, which aimed to highlight the enormous risks that children face daily while they surf on the Internet.

"Prevention for Smile is the main pillar of its actions, always in collaboration with people from the public administration and other institutions, and, so, in 2023 it managed to provide holistic support to 91.366 children. Technology is a blessing, but when used improperly it becomes a curse. That is why we all need to join forces and try to support our children, as the more people we are, the more solutions we will find", said Mr. Costas Yannopoulos, President of the BoD of the Organization, after welcoming the attendees and thanking them for their presence.

Mr. Vasileios Papakostas, Police Colonel, Director of the Cyber Crime Division of the Hellenic Police, stressed that "We are close to the citizens and we want them to know that we are their allies in heling them in any problem they face on the Internet, in any form of exposure, and we believe that results and solutions can be given through cooperation".

This was followed by a presentation on the Organization’s Center for Online Safety by Ms. Ioanna Gkika, psychologist and Coordinator of the  Center, who explained what we actually mean when we refer to “online safety”, referred to the purpose behind the Center's creation and demonstrated its most important services and tools, namely: a specialized team of psychologists, Hot/Helplines (1056,116000,116111,1017), Chat 1056, Educational prevention tool, in collaboration with the Department of Primary Education of the University of Crete-"The Centre of Continuing Education and Lifelong Learning European Distance and E-Learning Network (EDEN)", and CyberTipline Hellas, designed and implemented with the valuable help of "The Smiling Hippo".

According to the 2023 statistics on Online Safety, we supported:

  • 1 child every 2 days who faced an online risk
  • 7.405 children with interactive prevention interventions
  • 1.028 parents/guardians and 168 teachers with interactive prevention interventions

This was followed by a presentation of the online survey that was conducted by the students-volunteers of "YouSmile", to highlight the dangers of attracting minors through anonymous chat platforms and social media applications – always under the parallel supervision of the specialized scientific staff of the Organization You can see it here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T5hgcuzCJsU&t=56s


  • 88 conversations were conducted with adult male users 
  • 58% of users - age 37 years - continued the conversation
  • 1 out of 6 conversations with adult male users (16%) - age 41 or older - sexualized the conversation

Members of the Child Rights Group of the Organization also expressed their own positions, so that the voices of those directly concerned could be heard. They elaborated on what children should do before, during and after:

BEFORE: Block. If what you need is attention and help, chatting with strangers on the Internet is not what you're looking for. Still, ignore those who send you. It's not normal for an adult to text a minor. And finally, tell someone older.

DURING: If the content of the conversation makes you uncomfortable, stop replying. It's never too late to report and block. Never send personal data. Report it to someone who can help you -adults you trust, the Police Cyber Crime Unit, the Helpline SOS 1056.

AFTER: Don't be shy, you're not alone. It's not your fault this is happening. Call 1056 for instructions. Don't be afraid to speak up-there are people who can support you. If the issue has escalated and there is material online, report it to the police. Don't be afraid of what other people say. Your own safety comes first!

Mr. Panagiotis Anastasiadis, Professor and Director of EDEN at the University of Crete, took over and continued further with the presentation of the new educational to The Centre of Continuing Education and Lifelong Learning European Distance and E-Learning Network (EDEN), stating that "Our goal was to co-create -with the scientific staff of the Organization- a holistic educational intervention, aiming at the safe and creative navigation of children on the Internet".

The main objective of the programme "Safe and Creative Surfing on the Internet" is for students to:

  • Experientially explore their rights and responsibilities in the online environment
  • Strengthen their critical thinking
  • Develop reflexes of initiative, responsibility and action to safeguard the rights of all people.

More here: https://www.hamogelo.gr/gr/el/ta-nea-mas/draseis-olistikhs-ekpaideytikhs-koinwnikhs-apremvashs-kea/

The children who visited the multipurpose Educational Center in Koropi on 6th February also had the opportunity to receive free preventive dental services, a presentation of suggestions and best practices for safe Internet surfing, presented by Mrs. Elena Zaglaridou, Learning Solutions Specialist, Education, Greece, Cyprus, Microsoft Hellas, and an informative presentation by Mr. Georgios Nakos, Psychologist, Ηellenic Police’s Cyber Crime Division.

Photographic material of the Press Conference to the following link: https://hamogelo-my.sharepoint.com/:f:/g/personal/danaekastani_hamogelo_gr/ErDB_GFrK9BOo5aQvHz7C8UBKjQMAg-75iE0Ds5bZHzD1A?e=2a7CKM

More information:
"The Smile of the Child"
Tel. 11040