To raise road safety awareness and respect for the traffic rules, which ensures safe mobility of students; the students did an audit and worked in association with RWA and Delhi traffic police. Smooth arrival and departure of students was facilitated

The ideas

The school is located in the residential area at E-Block of Naraina Vihar, New Delhi, with over 1,400 students of neighbourhood areas like Naraina Vihar, Naraina Village, Inderpuri, IARI Pusa, Budh Vihar, Shadipur etc. Although the school doesn’t have school transport, there is chaos after the school hours because of the narrow lanes leading to the school. The private vans hired by the parents also are a part of this chaos. The same scenario is found in all the other schools in a vicinity of one kilometre; a few students of the schools drive two wheelers and do not follow traffic rules of the road. There are parents triple-riding and, that too, without wearing helmets (or taking proper safety measures).
Moreover, the regular traffic on the roads is an added threat to all kinds of road users, especially children, thereby making it a highly accident prone area.
There are around 13-15 big and small schools in the Naraina Vihar, with over 13,500 students. Therefore it is a challenge to ensure the safe passage of students on the road.

We at Gyan Mandir, feel that:

1. Children are vulnerable road users. Anywhere there is a potential for moving vehicles there is a potentially dangerous traffic situation for children.
2. Children need assistance dealing with the traffic environment until at least the age of ten as they are not equipped physically or developmentally to make the crucial decisions to keep them safe. Like learning to drive a car, children need practice and experience to walk safely in an environment with traffic.
3. They need to be accompanied and closely supervised by a parent or adult to keep them safe.
4. In adolescents there is a different problem, driving two-wheelers without a license or helmet.
5. The parents also provide vehicles to children. It is just like moving bombs on the roads, as we call them in the school. Why bombs? Because they are not only a threat to their own lives but also to the others by not following safety rules on the road.
Therefore, the idea was to encourage students to follow safety norms when they are on the roads so that the whole community itself becomes safer. The road safety education of various agencies was planned & done for parents, residents, the Welfare Association (RWA), students and cab drivers.

Our motto: ‘SAFE MOBILITY’

The initiatives

The Road Safety members (students and teachers) of the school undertook an initial audit of the schools (before and after school time) in the Naraina Vihar community to make it a ‘zero’ accident area. The following data was collected; a Road Safety Audit of the following was done:

1. Number of schools
2. Number of students in each school
3. Modes of transport used
4. School schedules
5. Road Safety Initiative of schools
6. Number of exit points in each school

After the data was collected, the Road Safety club members with the Residents Welfare Association (RWA) and the Delhi Traffic Police together chalked out a proper plan for spreading awareness and bringing a change on the ground.

As it is said ‘Charity begins at home’. So the school planned to educate our children first.
1. The school followed an annual road safety activities charter and road safety education was well-integrated within the curriculum.
2. The school became associated with the RWA and various NGO’s working in the field.
3. Through a plethora of activities –such as skits, qawaali music, poems, posters, flash mobs, body installations, traffic control, workshops, debates, slogans etc. – ‘awareness was spread in the adjoining areas’.
4. Workshops for the van drivers were arranged and the conditions of the vans were assessed on a regular basis.
5. The school has an active road safety patrol consisting of students who control the smooth movement of students once the school day is over. They also ensure that the students board the vans safely and the vans move safely.
6. Student traffic-patrol volunteers were put on duty to supervise the queue from the primary classes to the vans and also the safe movement of vans.
7. Delhi Traffic Police officers such as Mr.Anil Shukla, Jt.Commissioner of Police, New Delhi; Ms.Seema Sharma, TI Delhi Traffic Police, NewDelhi; Mr.R.K.Jha, DCP, New Delhi; Mr.Rishipal Rana, ACP, N. ACP, New Delhi Rana; ACP, New Delhi; and Mr.Ved Prakash, SI,New Delhi were called to give workshops to the students to make them aware of the laws.
8. The school’s students contacted the local police station and also the Delhi Traffic Police Headquarters at Todapur to assign police officers at the time students leave the school.
9. The students persuaded the principal to write a letter, along with the RWA, to the Joint Commissioner of Delhi Traffic Police stating the severe traffic hazards that school students face in the community.
10. The community schools were joined in an association for the safety of students in Naraina Vihar. “Together We Can Make a Difference”
11. We also facilitated the training of teachers of other schools by Delhi Traffic Police and through the formation of Road Safety clubs.
12. Now, with the help of the Delhi Traffic Police & Road Safety Patrol the students feel safe on the road and also follow the traffic rules.

Future Plans-Learning from the west
A combined effort of schools, students, RWA (senior citizens) and Delhi Traffic Police is planned to manage the safe mobility of school children on the roads.
Proper planning of duties will be allotted to all the interested social workers and Delhi Traffic Police at various schools and intersections.

Every School will be associated with:
1. Two teachers in charges
2. Student’s Patrol
3. Two Delhi Traffic Police Officers
4. Five to six senior citizen volunteers

The plans have been finalised and during the UN Road Safety Week (4-10 May 2015) the school again wrote a letter to Ms.Meenakshi, SIAM requesting to conduct training of students in all the 13 identified schools of Naraina Vihar, thereby facilitating the process of formation of student patrols.

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