Yesterday, we were on a mission in St Joseph's Workington. Before we began, there was another group in, raising awareness of child sexual exploitation. Recently, there have been a number of high profile cases in Rotherham and Rochdale where vulnerable young people have been caught up in webs of abuse. Alter Ego Productions presented a hard-hitting drama, exploring the issues, based on a real life case of a girl called Chelsea who was befriended by someone older on the internet, drawn into their world and systematically cut off from her own world, her friends and family, and then trapped in a nightmare world of abuse. The drama explored how Chelsea was subject to increasing levels of controlling behaviour through threats, blackmail and abuse.  The drama opened up awareness around child sexual exploitation, trafficking, the 'grooming' process and safe internet use.

What can you do to help keep yourself and your information safe online?

  • Don't give out personal information.
  • Check that you have high privacy settings on any social media that you may use.
  • Don't meet up with people that you've only chatted to online.
  • Don't assume that whoever you're talking to is necessarily telling you the truth.
  • Never text, email or post risky images of yourself or others. Once you've sent it you have no control over what happens to it.
  • Don't add people that you don't know (even if you have a mutual friend).
  • Tell somebody if you receive risky or abusive messages or comments.