The Who Cares? Trust has launched a secure online resource for children in care.
Carezone provides a virtual world, including a bedroom that can be customised, a 'smartagent' to guide children around the zone, information and educational resources, a safe chatroom patrolled by trained adults, and a secret vault where users can store digital documents.
Carezone is designed to combat the isolation felt by children in care and provide useful information in a fun and safe format. The system, which is more secure than internet banking, can only be accessed with a smart card that generates a new pin number each time the site is entered, combined with specific security questions.
As very few adults are authorised to access Carezone, the trust has developed a sister site for local authorities and carers.
The system has taken four years to develop with the input of local authorities, young people and other charities including the National Children's Bureau and Barnardo's.