The 2013 edition of Renault’s Your Ideas Your Initiatives competition has once again put the spotlight on youth and their capacity to take action and make concrete changes to improve their own lives. The competition calls on students to develop and implement their own creative initiatives to help make positive changes in their communities and countries.
The international jury has chosen this year’s winners and finalists – and with 49 excellent contributions from 19 countries by 2578 students, the decision was not easy. The three winners were from Serbia, Russia and Lebanon.
In Zemun-Belgrade, Serbia, students from the Traffic Technical High School communicate a crucial road safety message: “Don’t drink, love life”. The students reached all of Serbia through lectures and seminars that focused on safe behavior in traffic and drink driving; a short video as well as a series of live theatre performances which were viewed and attended by thousands of people; and an invitation to the national radio station in Belgrade. The reactions and comments of many viewers and audience members are evidence that the students’ work and their message have made a real impact.
Students from the English International High School in Moscow launched a web-based awareness raising campaign focused on pedestrian safety. The website covers a lot of ground: actions taken by the local government to improve road safety, the differences in road safety issues between low and high income countries, the development of technologies making people safer, and much more. The students filled the website with useful and interesting content, and have created a separate YouTube channel for professional quality videos. Regular updates, useful tips and interesting content are more reasons to visit the site, and the public response to all of their actions has been receptive and positive.
Finally, students from the tenth grade of the Jesus and Mary School in Antelias, Lebanon collaborated with the road safety NGO Kunhadi to make the area around Antelias Public School safer for pedestrians. They created a list of the changes that needed to be made and managed to see them achieved: a ‘SCHOOL’ sign, a speed limit sign (20km), a zebra crossing, and two lines of ‘cat eye’ reflectors. They found sponsors to cover the total project budget of $5000. The students then contacted the media to raise awareness of the project and road safety in general, and they were featured on three highly rated talk shows, in two newspapers and on three radio stations, reaching all of Lebanon and even beyond into the Arab world.
These three schools will be awarded with their choice of an iPad or a digital camara, as well as a 500 euro prize, to develop additional road safety activities.
The jury also selected the following seven finalists: National College of Informatics “Traian Lalescu” from Romania,;, I.I.S.S.Tartaglia-Olivieri from Italy; Educa SOŠ s.r.o. from the Czech Republic; IES Juan Manuel Zafra from Spain; Laxman Public School from India; Stredná priemyselná škola elektrotechnická from Slovakia; and the Indian School Al Ghubra from Oman. These schools will be awarded a cash prize of 250 euros.
These winning initiatives, along with all of the others, are presented in depth on the website: http://your-initiatives.safety-mobility-for-all.com/