KENT, ENGLAND, September 28, 2013 /24-7PressRelease/
-- Families in the UK are being encouraged to have a daily digital detox - in a bid to reconnect with each other and find fun ways to spend time together.
Brits are being invited to pledge their support for the Tech Timeout challenge
and take a daily scheduled break from their electronic devices for one hour every day, for a week.
The initiative - supported by Foresters, the international financial services organisation - is aimed at helping families reconnect and spend more quality time together, especially as the UK is the second most prolific social network user in Europe*.
- Statistics** reveal that in 2012, each week, 91% of all 5-15 year olds used the internet, with the usage increasing as the child got older: 6 hours for 5-7 year olds, 8.1 hours for 8-11 year olds and 17.1 hours for 12-15 year olds.
- The study also showed that 12-15 year olds spent as much time using the internet as watching television - meaning that the average 12-15 year spends around 34 hours a week in front of a screen of some form.
- Further research*** revealed that while 45% of parents understood that technology and the internet will play an important role in their children's lives, they felt it is important to put appropriate limits on time spent in front of a computer.
Rebecca Bell, Project Leader from Foresters, says: "There is a growing concern that the sheer amount of digital devices in the average home is having an impact on family life and togetherness. Even if a family is sitting in one room together, it is likely that the TV or radio will be on, and individual family members will be on their tablet, smartphone or other device.
"Research shows that children in particular are so reliant on devices to keep them occupied, that they don't understand the importance of solitude or creating their own amusement. And with people having more virtual friends than "real" ones, the art of conversation is becoming difficult.
"To counter this, we are inviting families to join in this campaign and have a daily digital detox whether it is simply sharing a leisurely family meal together, playing cards, volunteering, getting out and about or one of any number of other activities."
Believed to be the first campaign of its kind in the UK, families can visit techtimeout.com (which originally launched in North America earlier this year with a huge take up rate) and take the pledge to turn off digital devices (including TVs, game consoles, smartphones and computers) for an hour each day for one week.
During the challenge, participants can visit the Tech Timeout website or Facebook page to share stories about the impact of technology on their lives - good and bad - their success stories, and their struggles with unplugging, plus tips on technology-free activities.
The site also has lots of useful information, including 50 things to do, which range from cooking a pizza from scratch to playing with a pet; volunteering at a homeless shelter to taking a bike ride; and looking at a family photograph album to playing a board game.
Ms. Bell adds: "The Foresters purpose is to enrich the lives of our members, their families and communities. By encouraging people to pledge their support to Tech Timeout, we are offering an innovative way to help families spend quality time together and turn our purpose into action."
for more information.
Tech Timeout and the Tech Timeout logo are trademarks of The Independent Order of Foresters.
At Foresters we believe in enriching the lives of our members, their families and the communities they live in. We're member-based, family-focused, and community spirited.
Our products benefit both your family and your community. We champion the well-being of families through quality financial products, unique member benefits and inspiring community activities.
We share our financial strength with over one million members across the United Kingdom, Canada and the United States. Throughout our 135-year history, our purpose has been to enrich the lives of members, their families and communities. The priorities remain today and will guide our future.
As an example, our work with Cash for Kids in their 2012 Mission Christmas Appeal helped over 250,000 children to have a better Christmas and granted GBP5.3m in cash, gifts and toys to local children.
Forester Life is responsible for funds under management of over GBP2.8bn* and is part of Foresters, the international financial services organisation.
Internationally, Foresters has over GBP11bn** funds under management and has been assigned an 'A' excellent rating by A.M. Best.***
Safeguarding our members' interests is at the heart of what we do. Being financially strong and responsive, with sound governance and continuing professional service have always helped us to protect our members' benefits.
*As at 31 May 2013
**As at 31 March 2013
***An "A" (Excellent) rating is assigned to companies that have a strong ability to meet their ongoing obligations to policyholders and have, on balance, excellent balance sheet strength, operating performance and business profile when compared to the standards established by A.M. Best Company. A.M. Best assigns ratings from A++ to F, A++ and A+ being superior ratings and A and A- being excellent ratings. In assigning the ratings for The Independent Order of Foresters (Foresters) and its subsidiaries Foresters Life Insurance Company and First Investors Life Insurance Company on July 3, 2013, A.M. Best stated that the outlook for all ratings is "stable", which means they are unlikely to change in the near future. See ambest.com for the latest ratings.