Unison Networks is introducing a digital safety education programme to heighten the understanding of safety around electricity within its communities. The programme, aimed at school children, will be delivered online in an engaging and interactive format.
For over 21 years, Unison has been conducting its Safe Sparks programme, a face-to-face educational initiative that has helped children comprehend the inherent risks of electricity. Unison's Safe Sparks initiatives have spanned primary schools across its Hawke's Bay, Taupō, and Rotorua areas, with upwards of 4,800 children having taken part in the initiative during the past three years.
The Safe Sparks programme addresses a variety of topics, including how to recognise the presence of electricity in a home, understanding its production method, and cultivating skills to ensure safety around it. It also provides crucial information about Unison's electrical assets in the community, like power poles, lines, and boxes.
The newly launched digital iteration of Safe Sparks is envisaged as a useful tool for school teachers to either introduce children to electricity safety or serve as a refresher between Unison's in-person Safe Sparks visits. Access to this interactive online programme is offered free of charge to all primary schools within Unison's network regions - Hawke's Bay, Taupō, and Rotorua.
Unison Group's General Manager of People, Safety, and Culture, Rachel Masters, emphasized the significance of the step, stating, "With the increasing use of technology in education and the restrictions Covid-19 brought, Unison saw the opportunity to bring its important safety messages to school children in a new and interactive way."
She added, "We are thrilled to introduce the digital Safe Sparks programme to our community. With all the key messaging of our in-person programme, the digital version offers another fun and engaging way for children to learn about staying safe around electricity. Electricity safety is a serious matter, and we believe that educating children at a young age saves lives."
Masters reiterated the intent behind making the programme accessible digitally, the objective being to disseminate its safety message to a broader student audience. She encouraged all primary schools in their territories to utilise this free resource to help cultivate a community with heightened safety awareness.
Designed for the consumption of both younger and older students, the digital programme can be adequately utilised for both group and individual study. Post completion of the course, there is a form for students to fill out, enabling Unison to keep track of the reach of its Safe Sparks programme and life-saving messaging.