Barcelona earmarks funds to improve the digital well-being of children and adolescents

Barcelona earmarks funds to improve the digital well-being of children and adolescents

The Barcelona City Council has announced a new government measure aimed at improving the digital well-being of children and young people in relation to the use of technologies.

With a budget of 6 million euros and a plan covering 51 actions, this initiative seeks to prevent premature and excessive access to screens, as well as to combat addictions and protect young people from inappropriate content and risky behavior.

Statistics reveal that a high percentage of minors in the city have access to mobile devices with Internet connection from an early age. For example, 47% of children between the ages of 10 and 11 own a cell phone, and of these, 42% have no restrictions on time of use.

The data show that the time spent on screens by children and adolescents is worryingly high, averaging 4 hours a day on weekdays and 5.4 hours on weekends.

In addition, a high percentage of young people have no time limit for mobile use, indicating the need for effective interventions to promote a healthy balance between technology and other activities.

In addition, 75% of them find it difficult to stop using their devices. These figures, together with the growing concern about the negative effects of excessive use of technology on the physical and mental health of young people, have motivated the implementation of this measure.

In search of the digital well-being of children and adolescents

The action plan includes several initiatives to be developed over the next four years.

Among the measures highlighted is the creation of the figure of the community and educational digital education referent, who will act as digital mediators in different municipal spaces to guide children, young people and families in the responsible use of technology.

Preventive workshops on safety in the use of devices will also be carried out, healthy leisure programs will be reinforced and cell phone-free spaces will be promoted in municipal facilities such as libraries and civic centers.

It is important to note that this measure not only seeks to limit children’s exposure time to screens, but also to educate them on the responsible use of technology and protect them from associated risks, such as cyberbullying and access to inappropriate content.

In addition, the aim is to involve families and raise awareness among the community in general about the importance of this issue.

Barcelona City Council has recognized the need to address this problem as a public health issue, and this measure represents an important step towards creating a safer and healthier digital environment for the city’s children and adolescents.