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The V&V partnership supported the Essex Safeguarding Children Board, and Southend and Thurrock Safeguarding Children Partnerships, with their campaign aimed at helping parents be more aware of online child exploitation and how to help children stay safe online.

Sadly, with the internet and social media so integral to our daily lives, the incidents of online exploitation, and opportunities to exploit children online, grow. The time spent online is increasing and this has been amplified during the Covid-19 lockdown.

Perpetrators are increasingly targeting children and young people via online gaming sites, hiding behind an anonymous username and pretending to be someone they are not. This can often lead to bullying, grooming and sexual exploitation.

Jim Pearson from the VVU shared his expertise around online gaming with the campaign, highlighting the importance of parental awareness to keep their child’s online gaming a safe and enjoyable experience.

Resources and advice can be found at