Over the past decade, Stairway has grown into a sought after training partner when it comes to child protection, especially prevention of child sexual abuse and exploitation. As the need and the demand for training have not been limited to local or domestic partners, our trainers have been spending an increasing amount of their time flying to far away destinations to deliver a variety of trainings. In order to reach further in range while saving on human resources and air travel, we decided a few years ago to transform our training modules into a creative and highly interactive e-learning platform.
The first initiatives in the development process included using established companies with experience in developing e-learning for a number of companies, but after about a year of very costly yet rather mediocre output, we decided to take an alternate route and use our own creative powers and create the e-learning platform in own house. With competent assistance from long-time friend and volunteer, Magnus Petersson, Monica Ray, SFI’s Creative Director, embarked on the creative processes. Our training team delivered their manuals and guidelines, and for the technical implementation, we sought out a local partner in Manila.
The process of development, assessment, testing and more development has been on for about 3 years, and on February 27th, we were ready to launch an almost complete platform, version 1. We chose this date out of convenience, since we had a chance to co-host a forum with UNICEF, the Inter Agency Council against Child Pornography, the Philippine Legislators Committee on Population Foundation, and with support from the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade-Australia. The forum aimed to review the results of the Philippine Kids On-line Survey and the National Study on Online Sexual Abuse and Exploitation of Children, prior to Stairway’s presentation of our new e-learning platform.
The general and overall conclusion to the studies presented, was an immediate need to create much broader awareness and educate all stakeholders associated with child protection, the children themselves inclusive. Thus, it was a perfect backdrop for presenting a high quality educational package, which has proven to appeal to a very broad specter of audiences, and most significantly, the e-learning is an incredibly cost- and time efficient mode of disseminating information and education to unlimited numbers of learners, regardless of geographical position.
The launch went very well with lots of interest from everybody present, but the strongest reaction to this new initiative came a few days later, as Ace (senior trainer) attended a roadmap planning session of the law department of the Information and Communication Technology Department. One part of the session was a discussion on the situation of child online protection in the Philippines. The presenter of this portion was a seasoned cybercrime investigator from the National Bureau of Investigation, who broke down when he was presenting the data. Later on during plenary he shared that he had become overwhelmed with a feeling of helplessness, and he continued by saying that he was so thankful to Stairway for launching the E-learning and creating the cybersafe manuals, since he sees that the only way to address this problem long term is through education. He added, that he hopes the E-learning will be used by all schools and emphatically encouraged all in the room to access this solution, which is already existing.
No wonder that Ace described this all as a “powerful moment!” I don’t think we can ask for any better endorsement. After the final touches of the platform are done, we will get back to the Department of Education with the aim to follow the gentleman’s recommendation and get the e-learning out to some of the 44,000 schools in the country.
Please visit Stairway’s new e-learning site at: www.elearning.stairwayfoundation.org