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Developing and disseminating excellent mobility management measures for young people (CONNECT)

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The CONNECT project engaged schools, pupils and their parents to encourage pupils to use more sustainable modes for journeys to and from school. Based on a review of best practice in Europe, the project identified two initiatives that have proved particularly successful in changing travel behaviour: the Traffic Snake Game aimed at primary school children and the Eco-Trip campaign for young people in secondary schools. During the Traffic Snake Game, primary school classes set themselves targets of how many car trips they want to avoid. Every day a child receives a coloured sticker representing how it travelled to school. Each class collects stickers and adds these to a large banner depicting a snake. Pupils receive rewards when they meet particular "milestones" on the snake. As part of Eco Trip campaign students debate the campaign first before producing a video clip, followed by one week during which students are encouraged to travel by sustainable modes. Video clips are entered into national contests, followed by an international award.

Results

  • Hands up surveys before and three weeks after the action week showed that the use of sustainable modes of transport (including walking, cycling, car sharing and public transport) had increased by at least 7%.
  • Over 5,000 teachers from more than 350 schools in nine countries participated in the "Traffic Snake Game" or the "Eco Trip Campaign", saving an estimated 1 million car kilometres.
  • The "Traffic Snake Game" engaged over 70,000 children from 295 schools in Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Greece, Hungary, Italy, the Netherlands, Slovenia and the United Kingdom over 3 years.
  • The "Eco Trip" campaign engaged nearly 13.000 children from 66 schools in Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Greece, Hungary, Italy, the Netherlands, Slovenia and the United Kingdom over 3 years.
  • Production of educational materials and manuals for teacher in seven languages.
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Lessons learned

  • In most EU countries, the change from Traffic Safety Education towards a broader Mobility Education is an ongoing process at the curricula and school level. Mobility issues have often still a low priority, but the most promising way forward appears to be to link sustainable mobility to the topic of Education for Sustainable Development.
  • The success of the campaigns in different countries is heavily dependent on the enthusiasm of a teacher or principal at a school. In addition, convincing school teachers and students takes power of persuasion and time.
  • The CONNECT campaigns have proven to have a low political thresholds due to the combination of safety, health and children. This is a hugely beneficial when trying to engage stakeholders.
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Partners and coordinator

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Contact

Mobiel 21
Belgium
Contact point: 
Name: 
Elke Bossaert
Tel: 
0032 16 31 77 06
Name: 
Raf Canters
Tel: 
+32 16 31 77 06
Name: 
Bossaert Elke
Tel: 
+32 16 31 77 00

Budget

In brief

Duration:
01/10/2007 to 30/09/2010
Contract number: 
EISAS/EIE/07/001/2007

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