Encouraging the positive use of technology through community engagement

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Title

Safer Communities



Place of Publication

United Kingdom


Office of the Vice-Chancellor




Lester, L., Cross, D., Terrelinck, D., Falconer, S., & Thomas, L. (2016). Encouraging the positive use of technology through community engagement. Safer Communities, 15(3), 134-141. Available here.


Purpose - The purpose of this paper is to describe a seven stage community engagement process to develop and disseminate community uptake strategies which encouraged cybersafety as part of a positive transition from primary to secondary school among Australian young people. Design/methodology/approach - The combined principles from socio-ecological models, community development models and student participation models formed the foundation for the strategies. Resources were developed for all members of the community - students, parents, teachers and the broader community. The methods included: the formation of a steering committee and a Youth Advisory Board; review of the current literature; development of online resources; a youth resource development activity; development of youth resources; translation of resources into health promotion initiatives; and the dissemination of resources at community events and facilities such as schools, libraries and recreation centres and through print and social media. Findings - Community engagement strategies - in particular a partnership between a Western Australian university and local government body, the steering committee consisting of local organisations, and the student advisory board - were used to successfully design and promote resources developed by young people for young people. Originality/value - This study utilises a community-level approach to develop resources to encourage cybersafety and a positive transition from primary to secondary school.



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