Earth Team implements education programs and outreach to increase student awareness and improve transportation, air quality and community health for the East Bay area. For the 2018-2019 school year, students at John F. Kennedy and Richmond High School learned about active transportation and the role it plays in improving health and air quality. Earth Team collected data from campus communities to plan school-specific activities for students; peers were guided through discussions about active transportation, air quality, and community health.
Students created outreach materials to educate their peers about the environmental benefits of biking vs. other modes of transportation. They had open discussions about how they get to school and why they choose those methods. One topic that students explored was asthma in the community; participants used straws to illustrate the first-hand effects of air quality on human health.
TransForm supports deep community engagement at the local level. Staff worked with schools to identify Youth Champions, individuals that lead and implement activities at their schools and lead discussion on the importance of transportation, the climate crisis, and equity in the community. TransForm provided leadership development training to youth in the communities, and Youth Champions were able to reach 12,000 students, families, and communities with their education and outreach programs!
The Champion program saw great success as educational videos exploring active transportation were broadcasted at student bulletins and posted on school websites to help promote mode shift activities. Through TransForm’s efforts to help establish the Youth Champions Program, students from multiple schools are collaborating to create a regular biking vlog to increase the reach of their message and capacity for change.
Check out the Golden Sneaker Contest Video here!
Peninsula YMCA YBike:
With the support and training from YBike, 25 students from the Redwood Continuation School were able to build their own bikes and use them as regular transportation to get to and from school. Y-Bike provided technical assistance twice a week for at-risk students, and encouraged students to become pioneers in active transportation. Of the 25 students who participated in the program, 5 have stepped into leadership roles and helped implement a Walk and Roll to School Day and a Bike Awareness Day. They had a 25% participation rate on Walk and Roll to School Day, with 40 students participating. Students participating in bike repair program are not just building bikes but also gaining confidence through collaboration and communication skills.