Traffic Firefly Project
The trends of the traffic accidents remain present as one of the primary problems of our country in spite of the decrease in recent years. In terms of the financial and emotional damages it carries with, traffic is one of the most important problems of all countries. Compared to the developed ones, the traffic accident statistics of the developing countries indicate that the age group more affected by the death and the physical injury is the children. Only in 2011, 1.228.928 traffic accidents occurred in Turkey. Therefore 3.835 people died and 238.074 people physically injured.
Given that traffic is a communion and communication culture, learning period should begin in early ages and carry on. Developing a change in traffic-culture-related values, attitudes and behaviors is mostly tried to be created with traffic education. All the legal regulations and precautions are structured to prevent people from the accidents targeting short-term effects. Accordingly, many citizens do not have any effective traffic training background and they react with their negative habits and behavior patterns so that they not only cause a danger in traffic but also be exposed by it.
It is thought provoking that the ratio of the children in Turkey who have a relation to an accident in some way such as being the reason of the accident, getting injured or passing away is really higher than the other countries. Researches state that the main reason of this problem is the inadequate knowledge and skills about the traffic environment.
Along with the daily inspections of the governmental agencies, a long-term “traffic education” prevents kids from those negative effects. But this training should absolutely not be an adult-oriented “driving education”. It must be an education program that is specifically at the primaryeducation level and covers different parameters of traffic. 1
This project as a cooperative effort of Educational Volunteers and Mercedes Benz-Turkey focuses on increasing the traffic knowledge and awareness of kids who are between 7 and 14 years old in addition to developingconcepts, skills and attitudes relevant to traffic. TEGV Firefly Mobile Unit hosts kids to learn by fun activities about traffic during the school and out-of-school hours.
These Traffic Education Program activities go through with a Firefly that has built specifically for this program. It is going to be a thematic mobile unit, thus kids can practice the program contents through the specific equipment and supplies related to traffic. This education program is adapted from a global traffic education program called “Mobile Kids” Mercedes-Benz conducts in many countries.
It includes some modules such as basic traffic terms, traffic rules, crossing, attention and special circumstances in traffic and focuses on increasing the competency of children in this field.
Traffic Firefly is going to settle down in the primary school gardens and achieve its purpose there. Every child at school is going to get a 6-hour training. Also the program is enriched due to the kids being able to join the activities for the summer time as well.