We may all be using our cars less right at the moment, but EACH Child recognises that road safety is a shared responsibility. Everyone can play an important role in helping reduce road trauma and death.
In 2019, EACH Child was invited to participate in a Road Safety Education Inquiry Project in partnership with VicRoads and the Early Learning Association of Australia . This was a new initiative as part of the Starting Out Safely program and was designed to expand understanding of innovative road safety education that supports children’s active participation in community life.
EACH Child was asked to identify a local road safety issue or challenge and, with the project resources and expertise of the Starting Out Safely Team, implement ideas that empower children and adults to make the community safer; specifically a new pedestrian crossing to enable them and other pedestrians to cross Patterson Street safely.
Tracey Matthews, Educational Leader, EACH Child believes “the importance of participating in this project was to provide the children with an opportunity to increase their knowledge of road safety and be active advocates within their community”.
The children were encouraged to share their perspectives and thoughts by creating drawings, brainstorming ideas and coming up with a Road Safety Story together on how they could make Patterson Street safer for everyone in their community.
Kylie Spears, Deputy Mayor, presented the children’s ideas and petition to Maroondah Council on 18th November 2019. As a result of this project Maroondah City Council Traffic Engineers have since:
- Replaced a Crossing sign at Patterson Street
- Arranged for Patterson Street to be part of the Council Speed Radar Trailer Program
Tracey Matthews said, “it is important to embed road safety education in our curriculum to improve road safety outcomes for children and their families. The project was very rewarding for the children, families and EACH Child Educators to be part of and has provided the children with the skills and knowledge to be safe road users for now and in the future”.
We are continuing conversations with Maroondah City Council about putting in a pedestrian crossing, which has not yet been constructed.
Keeping our roads safe is everyone’s responsibility and road safety education for our youngest community members will help keep our children safe.