Digital Prevention Platform
Winner of the MEDEA Award for Professionally Produced Educational Media 2014
Saffron Interactive, a London based learning technologies provider. developed a revolutionary e-learning course and Digital Prevention Platform for AVA (Against Violence and Abuse). Education is central to preventing violence against women and girls. The e-learning course challenges preconceptions, allayed fears, promoted action, all as part of a larger prevention portal to educate those in safeguarding positions; encourage discussion of abuse and support responding to disclosure correctly.
The innovative course and website brought together expertise from across the field to create a knowledge base so that learners could take action. This project really does demonstrate how learning technologies can change behaviour in a meaningful way.
The e-learning course is aimed at all practitioners who work with children. This is a diverse audience which includes primary school teachers, youth workers and other roles who have interaction with children in an educational setting such as school cooks, caretakers and so on. The wider audience for the resources database is the many existing and emerging practitioners who run youth projects on this subject and related subjects, working either in the public or the state sector.
What the judges said
"This project has an excellent pedagogical quality. The narrative flows very well and the user is walked through each stage of the process. The learning assessment is built in in the practice studies. It is fully usable as it stands and meets the learning objectives very well. A great mix of OER-based courseware employing a range of media; words, audio, graphics, animation, etc. It has an excellent quality all around and very clear and logical e-learning courses. The additional features such as progression tracking and SAFE buttons show a well-coordinated and well planned programme."
About the creation of Digital Prevention Platform
Toby Harris from Saffron Interactive, UK says the following about this entry: "AVA believes in education as a form of prevention. This project saw Saffron and AVA combine technologies and techniques in new ways to create far more than a website and an e-learning course. We developed the platform for an ambitious change campaign. We wanted to educate practitioners and students about different kinds of abuse and correct procedure to improve report rates. Prior to this prevention platform and course, there was no location where a wide range of knowledge about different types of abuse could be found. This project desperately needed to address this gap in the sector. A PSHE Lead from a Secondary School confirms that: 'Talking more about these issues has created a sense of support for these students; they are more aware of situations and recognise it is not normal.'
The course will be used in a variety of settings, but initially every employee at a school will be expected to take it once, and then refresh their knowledge every year. The course is designed to be updatable using a common Microsoft tool, InfoPath, so AVA will update it every year to keep it compliant with best practice and legislation.
The WordPress-based website itself is a continually growing resource. Users are able to put their own prevention project on an interactive map, to facilitate the building of communities of practice, and to suggest more resources with the suggestion box. This growing community and resource base represents a lasting educational community around the larger aims of the project."
About Toby Harris
Toby is the creative lead and platform product manager at Saffron Interactive. Toby is an open source enthusiast, who has extensive experience with learning management systems and a frenetic devotion to social media. Consequently he is able to keep an eye on best-practices in the ever-evolving world of elearning.
Saffron Interactive is a European digital learning and communication company, working with FTSE 250 organisations to improve performance and create change campaigns. Saffron Interactive produces award-winning bespoke elearning, it has pioneered mobile learning, open source learning platforms, serious games, apps and blended learning programmes.
About Joanna Sharpen
Jo Sharpen is a qualified youth worker with a BSc (hons) in Psychology and a MA in Women and Child Abuse. She is also an online counsellor working with young people who have experienced abuse. She has worked for AVA - Against Violence and Abuse (www.avaproject.org.uk) for 8 years. Prior to this she worked for the Institute of Psychiatry as a researcher and then at Eaves Women’s Aid for several years, in a refuge. She is also an online counsellor for young people who have experienced gender based violence.
She wrote the national toolkit on children and domestic violence ‘Improving Safety, Reducing Harm’ for practitioners which was published by the Department of Health in 2009 and is currently editing a new version. She has also written numerous policy briefings, guidance and training packages on violence against women and girls. She also write the national guidance for the Home Office on preparing for the amendment to the domestic violence definition and assessing risks to teenagers and moderated their ‘this is abuse’ forum, responding to over 3000 young people.
During the MEDEA Awards Ceremony that took place during the Media & Learning Conference, “The Digital Prevention Platform” was announced as the Winner of the MEDEA Award for Professionally Produced Educational Media 2014, Toby Harris received the MEDEA Statuette.