Help Save Lives with Heads Up! Helmet Safety Campaign

March 15, 2022

HANOI, Vietnam – March 15, 2022

Young people on motorbikes have become an icon of Southeast Asian streets. Scenes of students riding on colorful scooters in the mornings as they make their way to schools depict a region that’s striving to move forward towards a better future. The sound of their engines and honks is a welcome addition to the rush-hour noise. The youth — which makes up about one-fifth of the population — now own the streets of Southeast Asia.

This also means the youth has the power to make roads a safer place.

AIP Foundation is calling university students from Cambodia, Thailand, the Philippines, and Vietnam to be part of the Heads Up! campaign, a video-making public service announcement (PSA) competition aimed at promoting the helmet culture among young motorbike drivers. The winning video will be awarded 1,000 USD and technical support to develop into a full-fledged campaign that will be part of the global launch.

Promoting helmet culture

A report by the World Health Organization revealed that Southeast Asia’s poor infrastructure and mismanaged traffic claimed approximately 300,000 lives a year. The WHO further noted that road traffic injuries are the leading cause of death of people aged 5-29. It’s a “silent endemic” that’s been hurting the region for decades, and the numbers are seen to increase year after year.

Motorbike helmets are designed to protect the wearer’s head from severe forms of traumatic brain injuries. Studies have shown that the helmet absorbs the impact during a fall or a collision. Helmets reduce the risk of head injury by at least 45%, brain injury by 33%, facial injury by 27%, and fatal injury by 29%.

In Thailand, only 45% of motorcycle users wear helmets. The Kingdom of Cambodia only reported 43% helmet-wearers among the millions of motorbikes that crowd the streets of Phnom Penh every day.

In Vietnam, meanwhile, only one-tenth of motorists wear quality helmets, according to research conducted by AIP Foundation. This means 90% of motorists are actually in danger on roads. The Philippines, a republic of winding roads and millions of narrow alleyways, has strict helmet laws, but not all motorists wear protective headgear.

Mr. Greig Craft, President of FIA Region II (Asia Pacific) shared, “as countries in the developing world continue to experience rapid economic shifts and turn to motorized mobilization, road crashes will continue to harm our innocent people, especially children and young adults. Substandard helmets – which offer zero head protection – continue to plague our local markets, killing and maiming our loved ones. This is as unethical as selling fake medicines. Through the efforts of organizations like AIP Foundation, FIA and FIA Foundation, the world is understanding that there are solutions.”

Through programs that focus on local, provincial and national levels, AIP Foundation, The Fédération Internationale de l’Automobile (FIA) and FIA Foundation raise awareness on helmet use and traffic safety, targeting the most affected demographic — young drivers. The organizations also proactively participate in international advocacy efforts to urge world leaders to prioritize road safety efforts in development schemes.

Driving forward

The voices of the youth are the most powerful vehicle towards monumental changes. And these voices, filled with passion, creativity and aspiration, will be taking the spotlight in the new Heads Up! project.

Implemented by AIP Foundation and AA Vietnam, with support from The Fédération Internationale de l’Automobile (FIA) Road Safety Grant Programme, FIA Region II and FIA Foundation, Heads Up! is a regional public safety announcement competition for students from renowned universities across the four countries. Participants will be tasked to conceptualize and develop video narratives that creatively but comprehensively reflect the importance of quality helmet use and helmet safety among youth.

Jimmy Tang, Development and Strategic Partnerships Manager at AIP Foundation shared, “the main mission of Heads Up! is to engage and educate youth on the importance of using high-quality helmets and helmet safety, in general. We are strong believers that young leaders of today are incredibly passionate and creative. Our video competition provides young people with the platform to serve as ambassadors for helmet safety while creating powerful messages that are directly relevant to their peers.”

The Heads Up! project is the first dedicated platform under a regional initiative where the youth from the four ASEAN nations can connect, learn and exchange perspectives about the region’s road safety and the life-saving significance of helmets. Through the competition, the region will see creative campaigns made by and tailored for the “drivers” of the future.

Submission of entries should be made via email to and with the participant’s name, list of team members (if applying as a group) and school name. The deadline for entries is on March 31, 2022 at 5pm ICT.

● First prize — 1,000 USD and technical support to develop its video output into a full-fledged campaign that will be part of the global launch.
● Second prize — 500 USD
● Third prize — 300 USD

Finalists will also receive a Certificate acknowledged by the FIA Region II and AIP Foundation recognizing their contributions to promoting regional helmet safety in the Asia Pacific.

Shortlisted candidates will also be granted 15 MasterClass membership accounts (which costs USD 180.00/year/account) to give them access to a professional training platform and get connected with 100+ industry leaders in writing, business, lifestyle, personal wellness and more. These video-based classes will be a unique opportunity to learn and develop their creativity at their own pace.

For more details about the competition, please see the Heads Up! official website.

To read the press release, please click here.

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