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Recently, the Brazos Injury Prevention Coalition partnered with Texas A&M athletics and Hard Hats for Little Heads to provide every 2nd grader in Bryan/College Station with a free helmet. Bobbi Brooks, Program Coordinator for the Brazos Injury Prevention Coalition, joined A&M student athletes at the elementary schools to give a bike safety presentation and fit the children’s helmets.
On October 1, 2009, BikeTexas began the development of the new BikeTexas ParentsPlus Program. The program will provide parents, plus other adults concerned with bicycle and pedestrian safety, the certification training and resources necessary to create neighborhood bicycling and walking safety events. The program will develop safety materials in both English and Spanish allowing the safety message to be heard by a broader audience.
The ParentsPlus community partner concept is at work in College Station where BikeTexas trained Bobbi Brooks. She and several colleagues participated in a SuperCyclist Certification Training in August 2009, along with local Physical Education teachers. Their participation sparked the idea in BikeTexas to develop the ParentsPlus concept.
Potential ParentsPlus trainees are parent/teacher associations, teachers, community police officers, injury prevention groups, bicycle safety advocates, neighborhood associations, chambers of commerce, and youth community leaders.
BikeTexas Education Fund currently has 3,700 physical education teachers throughout the state trained, certified and teaching bicycle safety to approximately 200,000 Texas elementary students per year. The number of people learning basic bicycle and pedestrian safety could be substantially higher if teachers had parental and community support. The ParentsPlus Program can provide that support by training partners in the community who are in a position to put time and energy into bicycle and pedestrian safety.