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Funding boost for children's social media advice service

Funding has been announced for a new advice package on the healthy use of social media.

Social media: Funding announced.
Social media: Funding announced. Pixabay

Funding of £90,000 has been announced for a new advice package on the healthy use of social media and screen time.

The Scottish Youth Parliament and the Children's Parliament are developing the national resource produced by and for children and young people.

It is part of a package of measures to improve the mental health of young people, funded by the Scottish Government.

Mental Health Minister Clare Haughey said: "Social media does have the potential to be used in a hugely positive way, but we want to ensure young people are properly informed on how social media promotes unrealistic expectations.

"We also want young people to know what the healthy use of social media platforms looks like. That's why we have commissioned this advice which, crucially, is created by and for young people. We have also announced our new national advisory group on body image.

"We want all young people to be able to grow up in a modern Scotland with good mental wellbeing, and with the right support for issues that they say matter to them. Now is the time to address these issues head on."

Suki Wan MSYP, chairwoman of the Scottish Youth Parliament, said: "It's vital that this project happens now, as research into the impact of screen time and social media on our lives is beginning to take off.

"This resource will be of direct benefit to children and young people in 2019 and on the generations that follow - within and beyond Scotland."

Cathy McCulloch, director of the Children's Parliament, added: "We are aware of the risks associated with screen and social media use, however, the digital environment offers children extraordinary new opportunities.

"Social media use is an important issue for children as well as young people and we are excited to support their crucial role in the production of this world-leading digital resource."

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