Meet Sadat Rahman
Sadat is a 17-year-old boy from Bangladesh. Because of his father’s job as postmaster, he has moved around a lot throughout his childhood. Although this has been hard for him, he has made the most of it, learning new skills and making new friends in every new home. He embraced the internet, discovering a passion for video making and website development. The online skills he acquired during this time would come in useful later on. He now uses these skills to help other children and young people, through his awareness-raising organization, Narail Volunteers, and through his pioneering anti-cyberbullying app, Cyber Teens.
Sadat discovered the power of coming together with other young people in 2017, when Rohingya people fleeing the atrocities in Myanmar sought refuge in Bangladesh. Sadat and his friends organized a cycle rally for peace, and inspired by the experience, he set up his own organization: Narail Volunteers. The group has addressed a variety of children’s rights issues.
A story about a 15-year-old girl who committed suicide after suffering from cyberbullying moved Sadat so much, that he created the anti-cyberbullying app ‘Cyber Teens’ to give helpless teenagers a place to go for help. One of the major issues around cyberbullying is that young people are afraid to report it to the police or to inform their parents. The app gives young people information about internet safety and gives them the possibility to report cyberbullying confidentially. Cyber specialists, social workers and the police are brought together via his organization.
Anti-cyberbullying app Cyber Teens
The app has already supported over 300 victims of cyberbullying, including by reporting fake social media accounts and providing support for mental health problems. The app has led to the arrest of eight perpetrators of cybercrimes so far. Sadat has also reached over 45,000 teenagers with internet safety seminars in schools and colleges. He has created “Cyber Clubs” in every school in his local area. In these clubs, young people are educated on digital literacy knowledge. He now wants to spread the app beyond his local area to help victims of cyberbullying across Bangladesh.
A recent UN study shows that 1 out of 3 young people worldwide experience cyberbullying. Cyberbullying can lead to mental health issues, such as anxiety and depression, but ultimately can also lead to physical health issues, like sleep deprivation, self-harm or even suicide.
Sadat wants to see a world where young people feel safe online. “I live in a remote area,” says Sadat, “and I am a very ordinary boy. If I can save teenagers from cyberbullying, why can’t others? I believe that we have thousands of talented boys and girls in Bangladesh but they may not get the opportunity or courage. They will be inspired to see me and I think in the next year, the boys and girls of Bangladesh and across the world will do a lot of good for society.”
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