- The Active Digital Wellness (ADW) programme empowers parents and children to say YES! to waiting for the smartphone/smartwatch.
- The programme support parents in working together and implementing healthy and meaningful boundaries regarding effective screen management for children of all ages.
The Challenge: “Wait until grade 8”
The Active Digital Wellness programme’s core element is its Wait until grade 8 challenge. The programme empowers parents to rally together to delay giving children a smartphone until at least grade 8.
Talking to peers and working with like-minded parents, educators, and guardians will decrease the pressure kids and parents feel over kids having smartphones at an early age.
Smart- or basic phones
Smartphones with internet and social media access are distracting and potentially dangerous for children. However, they are already widespread in primary and high schools because of, i.e., unrealistic social pressure.
Children waste valuable hours using social media like TikTok, Snapchat, Instagram, Facebook, video gaming, and catching up on YouTube. These devices are quickly changing childhood with a negative impact on developing happy and healthy-balanced children. Playing outdoors, having fun and spending time with friends, reading books, and hanging out with family are happening a lot less.
There are basic phones that allow calls and text without the requirement of a data plan. Parents can, if you require your child to get in touch at different times, buy the basic phones. Buying a basic telephone does not impact this programme and you can still sign the challenge! The basic telephone avoids many of the distractions and dangers of the smartphone.
The Wait until grade 8 challenge encourages parents to delay the smartphone.
Invitation to take the pledge
Many parents may feel powerless in this uphill battle between smart phone usage and their kid’s wellbeing. You are not alone! We are here to help you and other caring parents and guardians!
There are many more like-minded parents who have waited for this programme to become active, and not only for South African parents, but we want to support parents worldwide.
We want to inspire you to become part of this exciting programme by taking the challenge today!
When completing your details on the challenge form, you’ll also have the option to indicate whether you would be available to fulfil one of the additional champion roles, such as:
|Country Champion (outside of South Africa)||Grade Champion|
|Provincial or regional Champion||Advisor to the Board of Directors|
|Community Champion||Member of a group led by a Champion|
Support and resources
You will get community support and access to relevant resources on this website to help delay the ever-evolving presence of the smartphone in, e.g., the classroom, social environment, bedroom, and family dinner table.
- ADW make available a Champion Starter Guide with a few recommended steps to jump in and spread the word.
- ADW will facilitate monthly group meetings (webinar) focusing on a specific theme, allowing questions-and-answers (February to November).
- Local, community, school, and grade champion groups can meet in person when and where possible.
Let’s band together and help each other to wait until at least grade 8 before children are allowed to have a smartphone. It is critically important to nurture our wonderful and vulnerable children.
Childhood is too precious to waste on a smartphone.
We need your energy and support!