Empowering Digital Citizens: Building Mental Resilience for a Safer Online World
Cultivating mental health resilience is essential in combating cyberbullying
November 23, 2023
Recognizing the imperative role of mental health resilience in the fight against cyberbullying, a nationwide initiative has been launched by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), in collaboration with the ICT Division and Moner Bondhu to underscore its urgency. Titled 'Strengthening Mental Health Resilience Against Cyberbullying and Online Harms,' this campaign aims to raise awareness and empower individuals, particularly women, to fortify their mental well-being in the face of online adversities.
As Bangladesh grapples with the challenges of the digital age, the campaign acknowledges the dual nature of online connectivity – presenting unprecedented opportunities while amplifying the threat of cyberbullying. The initiative comes in response to a pressing need, with women frequently becoming targets and experiencing ripple effects on families and communities. Recent studies, such as the one conducted by the Bangladesh Institute of ICT in Development (BIID), reveal an alarming 80% victim rate among girls and women on social media.
Honorable State Minister of the ICT Division, Mr. Zunaid Ahmed Palak MP, lauded the initiative, emphasizing the pivotal role of cultivating mental resilience amidst digital progress. He said, "With digital advancement comes its challenges. Cultivating mental resilience against cyberbullying is more than a campaign; it's a pivotal stride in ensuring our nation's mental health parallels our digital progression."
"Enhancing mental resilience is an important step towards a safer and more inclusive digital environment for all, where individuals can thrive without fear. Together, we can build a Bangladesh where online spaces are free from the shadows of cyberbullying and harassment, and mental well-being is protected.", noted Stefan Liller, UNDP Resident Representative in Bangladesh.
This nationwide campaign operates in collaboration with various partners, including Women Peace Cafés at educational institutions, experts from the National Institute of Mental Health, the Department of Psychology at the University of Dhaka, Bangladesh Computer Council (BCC), Centre for Peace and Justice (CPJ) of BRAC University, Counter Terrorism and Transnational Crime (CTTC) Unit of Dhaka Metropolitan Police (DMP), CBM Global Disability Inclusion, World Health Organization (WHO), and UN Women as advisory panel members, under UNDP’s ‘Partnerships for a More Tolerant, Inclusive Bangladesh (PTIB)’ project.
The initiative commenced at Jatiya Kabi Kazi Nazrul Islam University on 4 November and will continue until March 2024. Over 600 female students were equipped with strategies, tools, and knowledge to fortify their mental resilience against online adversities.
Stand with us as we empower individuals, especially women, to fortify their mental well-being in the digital age. Together, we can create a safer and more inclusive online environment for all. Let's make Bangladesh a shining example of resilience! 💪💻 #MentalResilience #CyberbullyingAwareness #UNDPBangladesh
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