Viewpoint : July 2014

Active Transportation to School Much accomplished… much yet to do!

Last week, the Association québécoise du transport et des routes (AQTR) presented us with the sustainable mobility award for all of the activities carried out as part of the On the Move in the Community program. Since 2005, this awareness-raising and facilitation program has been implemented in over 500 elementary schools in Québec, in order to encourage young people to commute actively to school. 

On the Move in the Community was launched in 2005 as the result of a disturbing observation: every year, fewer and fewer children were biking or walking to school. The media was even reporting that certain schools were not allowing their students to come by bike! To reverse this trend, we designed a program aimed at making parents and school administrations aware of the benefits of active transportation for youth.

On the Move in the Community uses effective methods to stress to municipalities, schools and parents the importance of making school zones, in particular, and neighbourhoods, in general, safe. Our actions have helped calm traffic and make biking safer and more enjoyable in the vicinity of hundreds of Québec elementary schools. We are proud of our role in changing living habits by reintroducing youth to the fun of getting to school by bike or foot rather than being driven by their parents. However, our work is not finished, since modifying human behaviour can take 10 to 20 years of work, which is why we will continue our efforts.

I would like to congratulate the Vélo Québec team, as well as our 14 regional coordinators, who are endeavouring to extend the On the Move in the Community program throughout Québec. I also want to thank Québec en Forme for its indispensable financial contribution to the success of On the Move in the Community.

Suzanne Lareau
President and CEO

For more information, see the press release.