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Following our work in Stepping Toward a Greener Tomorrow, which involved assisting schools in Active School Travel Planning, we’ve developed a strategy to build municipal capacity to continue that work.
We’re working to train five facilitators within the province that have the knowledge, skills and capacity to scale and sustain school-based projects using the successes of the original project as a template. These facilitators will begin working in eight schools to start. Further, we propose to build partnerships with municipalities to embed ongoing support for facilitators as part of their municipal travel planning projects.
The project aims to concurrently reduce greenhouse gas emissions, improve safety in schools zones, increase physical activity, and foster climate literacy through curriculum delivery. This work is ideally situated in the school communities, which enable access for environmental education and stewardship and act as “hubs” in the larger community.
We have selected our community Active School Travel champions to become facilitators and are currently working to train them. We expect to see challenges similar to the ones we’ve faced in the past, such as schools unsure about their ability or capacity to face the traffic challenges in their community or afraid of the risks of the existing travel opportunities. We’re ready to support our facilitators, but also know that as champions of this work already, they have the ability to take on any challenges that may come their way.