Making cyberspace a safe space
April Luu saw firsthand how her friends were being bullied and exploited online. That’s why she jumped at the chance to join our Cyber Self-Defense project.
“My friends didn’t know how to talk about it and were alienated and ashamed. That’s how I felt when I first came to the Youth Arcade. Staff were welcoming mentors and counsellors. They accepted me for who I am and helped me evolve.” April volunteered as a placement student for our youth criminal justice team, became a facilitator for our anti-violence program, and directed a youth democracy video. Her experiences led her to the Cyber Self-Defense project.
“I tried to help my friends cope but couldn’t stop the cause. Being part of the Cyber Self-Defense Project, I can help so many more people.”
As one of the peer researchers on the Project, April helps survey young women about their experiences with cyberbullying, internet luring and cyberstalking. Shared experiences of a peer encourages people to be open about their answers to the survey questions. Those answers will help shape a strategy to address cyberviolence in the community.
“I’ve seen that many young women don’t report the violence. They feel intimidated and vulnerable. I know this project can help.”