Translink & Eco-Schools launch challenge for ‘healthier & happier’ school run

Translink and the Eco-Schools programme have launched a sustainable travel challenge to cut car congestion around local schools and boost health.

The two-week travel challenge targeting Key Stage one to three pupils encourages more sustainable forms of travel including walking, cycling, and taking the bus and train.

Launching the initiative, Translink’s Lynda Shannon said it would be a good opportunity to introduce young people to a more sustainable lifestyle and inform them about the environmental, safety, health and cost benefits of more active forms of travel

She commented: “We want to encourage pupils from a young age to adopt good travel habits that stay with them as they grow up and become the next generation of commuters travelling to work.

“Recent news headlines about the health and wellbeing benefits of public transport provide even more incentive for people to move away from private car use.

“Although the challenge lasts a fortnight we hope that many participants will opt to continue using sustainable transport.

“As well as helping schools achieve the internationally-recognised Eco-Schools Green Flag, there’s also some great challenge winner prizes up for grabs including an Ulsterbus Tours school coach trip and day out in Dublin.”

Eco-Schools Manager Carmel Fyfe of Keep Northern Ireland Beautiful, added:“Thanks to the on-going support from Translink we are seeing more and more pupils getting involved in the Travel Challenge each year and choosing sustainable forms of transport for the school run from walking and cycling to scooting and taking public transport.

“The Travel Challenge is a fantastic opportunity for pupils to enjoy the health benefits of using sustainable transport while helping to reduce congestion round the school gates.

“Less cars on the road is also helping to reduce carbon emissions which is better for the environment too.”

Schools can register their participation online now at www.translink.co.uk/ecoschools/ where there is a range of engaging classroom resources available to download.

The deadline for completed Translink Eco-Schools Travel Challenge entries is May 13 2015. For further information call Eco-Schools on 028 9073 6920.