global | road safety

Grover gives a thumbs-up to safe streets for children everywhere.

Children’s Education Initiatives Around the World | Safe streets for children everywhere

It’s never too early to educate children about road safety. As passengers and pedestrians, on bikes and when playing outside, children are frequent traffic participants. To make safety a positive and shared family experience, Grover is flexing his diplomatic skills as a global Road Safety Ambassador for the United Nations’ Decade of Action for Road Safety 2011–2020 initiative.

In 2010, Sesame Workshop became a member of the Global Road Safety Partnership, a coalition of government and business groups committed to raising awareness of traffic safety among all road users. With a vision to make the world’s roads safe for children and families, our mission is to make road safety awareness a top-of-mind issue among road users, especially families with young children and establish a new mindset for the next generation of drivers.

A major step in the right direction has been the creation of three public service announcements (PSA), produced by Sesame Workshop. Broadcast in Africa, Asia, Europe, Latin America, and the Middle East since May 2011, each PSA features an animated Grover buckling up or putting on a helmet, then giving a thumbs-up — the universal signal of readiness among pilots, astronauts, and racecar drivers.

Taking our street-smart mission even further, we’ve created guidelines for educators, parents, and content producers (download the Education Framework for Road Safety), full of practical strategies that help make safety a family priority and put children in the driver’s seat when it comes to inspiring safe road and driving behaviors among family and friends.

In March 2012, we created the Elmo Stays Safe campaign in Australia, which launched to raise public and parental awareness of the importance of children playing in safe areas. The campaign utilized a number of resources, including a PSA on driveway safety and an outreach toolkit which can be downloaded on our website. By September 2014, we will have added a radio PSA and interactive app to accompany the toolkit and reach even more children in Australia.

Most recently, in April 2014 we also launched a similar outreach campaign in Costa Rica reaching over 4500 children. An evaluation report on the effectiveness of the campaign will be out later in the year.

Sesame continues to remain committed to global road safety and working with vested partners to support the mission.

Major support for Sesame Workshop’s Road Safety initiative is provided by the FIA Foundation, Inter-American Development Bank, Royal Automobile Club of Victoria and the Transport Accident Commission of Australia, and Holden. Additional support is provided by the Global Road Safety Partnership, Kidsafe Victoria, Michelin, the International Transport Forum, COSEVI, and Ministerio ObrasPublicas y Transportes.