Two Mt. Diablo District Schools Join Thousands in Celebrating International Walk to School Day
September 28, 2007
Students at Rio Vista Elementary School in Bay Point and Cambridge Elementary School in Concord will be part of a worldwide movement Wednesday, October 3 when they hit the streets in the name of physical activity and student safety as part of International Walk to School Day.
"This is a great opportunity for students and parents to take back their neighborhood and gain an awareness of safe walking routes to school, as well as places where safety improvements are needed," said Nancy Baer, Manager of Contra Costa Health Services' (CCHS) Injury Prevention and Physical Activity Promotion Projects. "We're hoping that families find that walking is a good way to beat traffic congestion and get an active start to the school day."
In the United States, International Walk to School Day is expected to include 5,000 schools from all 50 states plus students and adults in 40 countries around the world, a total of nearly 4 million people worldwide.
"We have helped organize this event at other schools in past years, and the sight of sidewalks full of children and crossing guards can be truly inspiring to a community," said Baer, whose projects are cosponsoring the event along with the schools, Ambrose Recreation and Park District, City of Concord Community and Recreation Services Department and the Network for a Healthy California.
Upon arrival, walkers will receive stickers and information on nutrition, physical activity and student safety, while the staff of the Ambrose District and City of Concord after-school programs will join with several Rio Vista and Cambridge teachers as crossing guards before school.
Walk to School Day was established in the U.S. in 1997 and merged in 2000 with pre-existing programs in Canada and Great Britain to create International Walk to School Day. Numerous websites have information about the event including CCHS' site (cchealth.org), cawalktoschool.com, walktoschool.org and iwalktoschool.org
"The idea is to work toward creating safer routes for walking and bicycling," said Baer, "as well as emphasizing the importance of issues such as increasing physical activity among children, pedestrian safety, traffic congestion, concern for the environment and building connections between families, schools and the broader community."
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