“A community working for the community” is a project that aims to implement an awareness campaign in our school, neighborhood and city community regarding road safety and sustainable mobility.
As a group of students that are about to leave secondary school, we have many discussions about different kinds of issues that happen in our community. We realized that as citizens we should care and get involved in helping to create solutions to some of the problems that we detected.
As a result, we decided to focus this project in two areas: road safety and sustainable mobility. We split into three groups so as to be able to develop three different projects that are interconnected within our community, which we wanted to impact.
Project 1: “Take care of our children” is a mediation project between Hirpace, an organization dedicated to caring for disabled children, and a private company. The transport company uses trucks which often park in the area reserved for Hirpace parking. This obstruction makes it difficult to move the children, especially those who use wheelchairs. This not only makes it difficult, but also very risky because it can cause a road accident. We interviewed teachers and the driver from Hirpace to understand better their difficulties. We looked for evidence to prove that traffic regulations are not being met and that trucks are moving on an unspecified schedule.
Project 2: “Be their eyes” is a project addressing citizens’ awareness of the difficulties blind people have to move around Salta city streets. In Salta, Argentina, almost 3% of the population is blind and does not count on technology to move around the city. Based on the compilation of testimonies of people who suffer this problem, we would try to transmit the difficulty that people deal with when moving around Salta city from one place to another and the lack of aid that they receive from others.
Project 3: “Road safety” is a project addressed to the wider community. Fatalities due to car accidents have been especially increasing in Argentina. The specific interventions implemented to prevent road traffic injuries are inefficient.
We decided to make the presentation of our work as a whole aiming to create impact in our local and wider community.
We worked on three different projects that work as a whole, as they are focused on the local and wider community of Salta.
Project 1: “Take care of our children”. We had meetings with both sides of the conflict in order to understand the point of view of each and find a “win-win” solution. If the mediation cannot be carried out correctly, we would like to write and present a document to the deliberative council that appeals for a change in the schedules of the trucks.
Project 2: “Be their eyes”. We decided to produce a short film to show the situation that a part of our community must deal with. Based on the recompilation of peoples’ testimonies and professionals from a school for the blind, we try to transmit the difficulties they have while dealing with traffic problems. Based on technology and the framing of our filming, we have tried to put the public in an empathic point of view with the reality blind people face. The short film will be uploaded to YouTube and Facebook so as to impact a vast majority of people.
Project 3: “Road safety” is a project addressed to the wider community; it was published in a province newspaper, so as to create awareness in drivers about the risks that some behaviors can cause while driving. We’ve decided to design a brochure with a selection of car accidents from alcoholism, speeding, disobeying traffic rules, etcetera, so as to inform society about the lack of prudence when you are seated behind the wheel. It was extremely important for us to include at the end of each car accident news report a reflection that includes statistics, quotes and personal conclusion that the reader could feel in touch with. The brochure is going to be included in the online version of the newspaper so as to be able to get the feedback of readers when they answer the survey we produced.
Although we didn’t have much time to develop our projects we have gained a lot during their process. We became conscious of some worrisome realities that surround us; we did a lot of investigation into the context of these problems; we have learned how to develop a project so as to reach others in a consistent way and got involved in creating solutions to problems that affect us and our community. These were some of the aspects that made this project successful.