ECO-TRIP raises awareness amongst youngsters on eco-friendly or sustainable trips. To involve young people in the campaign, they were asked to create their own short movie on the topic at hand.
Background & Objectives
Young people are a very important target group for changing travel modes, as mobility attitudes are deeply influenced by experiences from an early age. The travel behaviour of parents has a significant impact on children and their choice of travel modes. Additionally, parents, who are encouraged to accompany their children to school in an environmentally sustainable way, are more likely to reflect on their own mobility behaviour.
Most children and adolescents do not formally learn how to use alternative transport modes, or learn about the advantages of using sustainable transport from their parents or their school. Mobility and traffic education is still too often only related to learning traffic rules or road safety training. However, we learned from research that children and young people, who cycle and walk less, are more likely to become obese and unhealthy. We also see in other research that children like walking and cycling very much, in particular the social contact they have with their parents/peers and having the feeling of being more independent from an early age.
The main goal of the ECO-TRIP project was to raise awareness amongst youngsters on eco-friendly or sustainable trips. To directly involve young people in the campaign, we asked them to create their own short movie on ecotrips. By doing this, we hoped and expected to raise enthusiasm amongst them and their peers on this theme and to give them the tools to form their own opinions on sustainable transport.
The main goal of the ECO-TRIP campaign is to raise awareness amongst young people (secondary school age) of sustainable trips to and from school. To involve young people, we asked them to create their own short movie about their views of sustainable travel.
The ECO-TRIP campaign consists of 3 steps.
1. A debate.
- to draw attention to the project in the school
- to raise awareness on environmental issues
- matching age and curricula where possible
2. Movie and slogan
- to produce a short movie on ‘ecofriendly trips’ and ‘sustainable travel’
- this can include sub-themes like health, climate change or road safety
- youngsters’ opinions and viewpoints
- an ECO-TRIPPER is someone who travels to and from school in a sustainable way
- the main aim of the ECO-TRIP week is to get as many people as possible to travel to school in a sustainable way
- the goal for this week is to achieve an increase of at least 10% compared to the initial zero-measurement
The deluxe version of ECO-TRIP consists of the basic version as described in these 3 steps, bnut with with additional lessons and activities. Participating schools are encouraged to pay extra attention to sustainable transport during the entire week of the game. These additional activities can make the campaign more effective than the basic version. These deluxe activities can vary from school to school and country to country, fitting both needs as well as means.
This campaign ran in 2009 and 2010 in Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Greece, Hungary, Italy, the Netherlands, Slovenia and the UK, under the umbrella of the project CONNECT (supported by Intelligent Energy Europe). A total of 3 slogans led the way: “one car less”, “it’s up to us”, en “I’m an eco-tripper”. The message is clear: together we can make a difference. And it did. The campaign was warmly welcomed by partners and schools. It is a broad campaign with a lot of different activities at local level, but with the short movies as common ground. All participants liked the short movie competition very much. Introducing a competition was a well received element. During the project 66 secondary schools participated with the ECO-TRIP Campaign. In total 12799 students joined the campaign. The students were accompanied by 580 teachers.
During the two years of the project over 80 short movies were made in nine countries. Each year 9 national winners and two international winners were rewarded. The movies were shown and discussed in schools as well as on social network websites. The results of the campaign showed a good overall impact with increases in the percentage of sustainable trips during the ECO-TRIP week of 11.5%. Over the two year period a total of 338,303 car km were saved, matching savings of 55,143 kg CO2, and realising a reduction of 13,532g/PM.