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Meet Ella – the heroine helping children to stay safe online

Teaching children about online security, cyber safety and digital inclusion.


In Belgium, almost all households with school-age children have internet access. And while that opens up a world of opportunities to learn, play and develop digital skills, there are risks. But now, comic book heroine Ella is helping them to browse safely. Find out more about one of this year’s stories that made a real impact.


Navigating the net, safely

Children are spending more time online and that heightens the likelihood of cyberbullying, being confronted with fake news, receiving phishing emails or getting hacked. So how can parents and teachers equip children with the capabilities and confidence they need to navigate the net safely?

Enter Ella – the tech-loving star of a new comic book launched by Deloitte Belgium. She comes to the rescue when a hack causes trouble for her friends. Aimed at 10 to 12 year-olds, the story teaches children about online security such as firewalls and two-step verification.

“Digital inclusion and safety have always been very high on our agenda at Deloitte and we’ve looked at how we can use our own strengths to have the largest impact. Through Ella and her adventures, we want to help make sure kids are well equipped when online.”

Annelies Reul

Strategic Purpose Advisor, Deloitte Belgium

“I love every second of Ella,” says Annelies. “It’s very rare to be able to have such a direct impact on children’s lives and the team and ambassadors are so passionate about this project. It creates a spark in everyone.”

Tailored to children’s needs

Spearheaded in Deloitte Belgium by the learning and cyber teams, the project began its journey following several focus groups with people from across the country’s education sector to explore cyber safety and digital inclusion among children.

The teams also sought inspiration from Deloitte US, which had already produced a number of Ella comic books, adapting the content for people in Belgium. Alongside this, they created a range of tools, including a lesson plan, games and videos, to help teachers and parents use the materials.

Keen to make sure they met the specific needs of young children, they also worked with our Deloitte Foundation education partners in Belgium to develop the programme.

Available for free in Dutch, French and English, the comic book and toolkit can be found on the Deloitte website. Ella is also available in print, with the first copies sent to schools in April and May each year.

So far, the response has been overwhelmingly positive. Annelies continues, “We received more than 3,000 requests for copies and have already done three print runs. We’ve now placed an order for 30,000. It has been amazing to see so much interest.”

Assisted by ambassadors

Essential to the success of the project are our Ella Ambassadors – Deloitte volunteers who visit schools to deliver lessons on cyber security.

And judging by the feedback from teachers, and the many emails from children who are enjoying reading about Ella’s adventures, it’s a realistic ambition that Ella will impact lives for years to come.


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