September 18, 2020
KAIZHOU DISTRICT, CHONGQING, CHINA—September 18, 2020
Government and education leaders in Kaizhou District, Chongqing, China, along with AIP Foundation gathered at a workshop to report on the ongoing positive impact of the Walk Wise program since its closure in 2017. Throughout its implementation phase, the Walk Wise program in Kaizhou reached over 335,000 students, teachers and parents in 85 schools. The three-hour workshop highlighted road safety practices that were initially introduced in the program’s implementation process which are still used today, the increased collaboration between various government sectors, and the overall positive impact of the program on community members.
The Walk Wise program is a holistic, child-focused road safety and awareness program in Chongqing and Sichuan Province supported by Chevron and implemented by AIP Foundation since 2012. The program was first introduced in Kaizhou District, Chongqing to address road risks that are heightened by the region’s geographical features. While one of the most picturesque areas of China, Kaizhou’s mountainous region consists of steep, narrow hills and winding paths, which make community members vulnerable to road injuries and crashes.
Since the program’s conclusion, Mr. Li and several members from Kaizhou’s Education Department reported that road safety classes were still being conducted in primary schools, many of which have taken an interdisciplinary approach. Teachers have continued with walking school buses, a transportation method to ensure safe school journeys by having teachers walk with groups of students along a set route in a single file line. Yellow caps are still being worn by students as a preventative measure to ensure that they are visible on the road.
Local police also engaged with the community by encouraging safe road use. In 2018, the local police organized an interactive event with a “safety” station was set up outside each school in Kaizhou District. Teachers, security guards, and parents and guardians, were given precautionary tips on ways to be a better road user.
In addition to students, many teachers and community members were also positively impacted by the program. “The program has taught the students, teachers, and myself the importance of exercising road safety precautions,” Mr. He, Safety Director of Hanfeng school, shared. “The Walk Wise program has become so impactful that we’ve implemented road safety awareness and knowledge as an important class in our school curriculum and found that students are going home to share what they’ve learned with their families. We see those families exercising the same road precautions taught to our students as they take their children to school,” he continued.
The workshop demonstrated that the skills taught and activities implemented in schools have been largely successful and sustainable long after the Walk Wise program has concluded.
To view photos from the event, please click here.