It may help
you to think about the gains you have made during the course by
taking a couple of minutes to read the course writers brief reflections
on the process of writing the course.
course has been a huge learning and reflective opportunity for me.
In reading and finding out about topics using the Internet as a
resource I have been exposed to a wealth of new insights into the
lives of children around the world.
I had been
sceptical of the issues of utilising unregulated sources that may
carry little weight in the academic world. I realised as I worked
my way through the sessions that the Internet provides an opportunity
to challenge the privileged discourses of academia and allow practitioners
and young people access to a rich orchestra of voices who have different
stories and perspectives to share.
I found a value
in the web by the way in which I gained immediate access to organisations
and people working on behalf of children around the world; people
who are keen to find new ways of spreading the word of both the
issues facing children and the strategies and initiatives that are
being implemented to tackle their needs. The excitement of finding
a voice, perhaps from across the globe, silenced by the gatekeeping
of professional and academic norms, stays with me.
such as abuse survivors finding new connections, more hope for missing
children and their families, spreading knowledge conduits that are
not constrained by buildings and fees are opening up via the Internet.
I have also
sharpened my critical skills. The shock of searching for pictures
of children to use within the course and instead being presented
by pages of sites devoted to child pornography was partly in the
realisation that 'the problem' is not 'out there' but a part of
everyone's social responsibility. The lure of sophisticated sites
promoting ideas and actions, which are at odds to my own value system,
and/or which manipulate potentially vulnerable people was also salutary.
I still struggle
to make sense of the disparity between the emphasis in the course
on social exclusion and rights to information for children and young
people and the Internet being a tool that widens the gap between
those on the edges of society and those with power to participate
I have begun
to see more clearly the evolving role of the Internet in assisting
in the development of an internationalised commitment to and understanding
of child welfare. I see better that effective working with children
within borders does in fact require an eye on what's happening across
borders too. I have been privileged to be part of the EU/Canada
Child Welfare and Child Protection Project and have a renewed sense
of the importance and breadth of child welfare work in and between
Waldman May 200