Phoebe, Girlguiding Advocate, aged 20

In the current climate, we have become connected online more than we could have ever imagined. Whether this be for work, education, or keeping in touch with family and friends, young people are now spending the majority of their day online.  Not only have lessons and celebrations been moved online, but Girlguiding volunteers have worked incredibly hard to keep girls connected in a safe, virtual space. It’s all the more important to stay in touch with our friends, something which the Girlguiding community provides.

However, being online doesn’t come without its challenges.  Girlguiding’s recent Girls’ Attitudes Survey highlights that girls and young women are facing mounting appearance pressures in the virtual world. Today, our social media feeds can be full of unrealistic edited images, and misleading ads about weight-loss products. It’s upsetting that more than half of girls aged 11-21 have seen ads online that made them feel pressured to look different. In a time where young people across all four nations are spending more time online, Safer Internet Day is needed more than ever.