This is sponsored content for Zown.
Firstly, you might be wondering what Zown is. Well, it's pronounced zone and it's a "kids' own zone."
The app is designed for children between eight and 14-years-old and provides them with a safe, positive space.
Zown founder Lauren Adlam, a mother of four, developed the app after seeing her own children trying to navigate their childhood and teenage years in the new age of technology facing the pressures of social media.
"I wanted to create a safe space for them to go and feel good about themselves," Lauren said.
"There's no multinational company behind this, it's me as a mum wanting to make a difference.
"My number one focus is protecting users and making a safe space online."
Here are just five reasons the Zown app is a must-have for tweens and teens.
One: It's age appropriate and safe
Zown is a kids-only app, no one older than 18-years-old can have an account, contacting other people within the app is not possible and all content on the app is checked before being shared.
The content is positive, helpful and age-appropriate. All content on the app is separated into two groups, over 12-years-old and under 12. This ensures children are getting content that's relevant to them.
In the future it's hoped a youth advisory committee can be established with members from across Australia helping decide what content should be on the app and what other functions it could include.
Two: Expert minds backing creation
Thousands of hours of research and development have gone into creating this app including psychologists, school counsellors, teachers and private providers who specialise in drug and alcohol use and teenage development.
"We have a psychologist overseeing all the concepts and content and all these great minds coming together in the background," Lauren said.
"And there's also the protective element of myself as a mum wanting to make kids a safe space."
Three: It's free
The Zown app is completely free. While a premium version is coming in 2024 all the main elements will remain free for all users.
The premium version will include unlimited chat with the digital buddy and extra content.
Four: Zed - the digital buddy
Zed is the app's mascot and a digital buddy for users to interact with. Responses are AI generated from age-appropriate and kid-focused information.
"They can cask Zed questions like what to have for dinner, what to do if they're having issues with a friend, if they're worried about a maths test or if they're just bored Zed will suggest activities like writing a story and will help them get started by writing the first paragraph," Lauren said.
Five: It's fun
"Zown for kids is FUN. Zown for parents is SAFE. Sshh don't tell them - it's a bit like hiding the veges in the bolognese," Lauren said.
The app fosters positivity with affirmations and good (age-appropriate) news stories.
Users can set goals, contribute content like reviewing a book or movie, earn badges, unlock rewards and access activities for mindfulness, creativity, discovery or just for fun.
Learn more about Zown here or download the app with your child and start exploring today.