Safe school journeys at centre of Maputo’s mobility agenda
In Maputo, Mozambique, the FIA Foundation and its partners have been advocating for sustainable mobility and safe school journeys resulting in firm commitment for the agenda from city authorities.
The FIA Foundation’s partners, Amend and the FIA club Automovel and Touring Club of Mozambique (ATCM) have been working to promote sustainable mobility and road safety. In June the partners supported activities during the annual Sustainable Mobility Week in Maputo with strong advocacy on the need for safe school journeys, low speeds around schools, and new road safety measures launched.
The 6th Sustainable Mobility Week was held from 11 to 24 June 2023 in Maputo. The event promoted the year-round multi-stakeholder collaboration of national and international public institutions and civil society. In doing so, the week improves the coordination between the different actors to develop initiatives and concrete actions to enhance sustainable mobility in the Metropolitan Area of Maputo. The Week focuses on multiple aspects of road safety, such as safe journeys to school, the gender perspective in transport, the promotion of cycling and walking and the elimination of the stereotypes related to poverty, and the integration of informal transport into the public transport system. The Sustainable Mobility week is led by UN-Habitat Mozambique, Arquitects without Borders (ASF), Maputo Metropolitan Agency (AMT), Maputo Municipal Council and others. Amend has been part of the organizing committee since 2019.
Amend in partnership with the local FIA club member, Automovel and Touring club of Mozambique (ATCM) hosted an event on 22 June 2023, at Escola Primaria Completa Kurhula, in Maputo, to advocate for speed reduction around schools. The event brought together a range of partners, including strong representation from the Maputo Municipal Council, Traffic Police, JICA, Red Cross Mozambique, National Institute of Road Transport (INATRO), Local leaders, Amviro. The FIA Foundation was represented by Senior Campaign Advisor, Mervyn Kaye.
Speakers included Texel Cossa, Country Manager for Amend Mozambique and Loide Massangaie Castelo David, Deputy Director: Department of Mobility, Transport and Transit for Maputo Municipal Council, who spoke of the ongoing need to scale up the interventions in Maputo and elsewhere in Mozambique.
Texel Cossa, Country Manager for Amend Mozambique, said: “It is fantastic that Sustainable Mobility Week is such an established event in Maputo. We are proud to have been part of this event's organizing committee. With the support from the FIA Foundation and Automovel & Touring Club de Mozambique, we have been showcasing this year and over past years, the real impact of reducing speeds to 30km/h around schools. As a result of FIA Foundation’s support, we are also delighted to be part of a team that is currently working on establishing a safe school zones manual for the Maputo Metropolitan Area. This is great progress for our advocacy demonstrating that the manual results in tangible and real impact on the ground, something we will continue to work with the municipality and partners to scale up in the future.”
During the event at Escola Primaria Completa Kurhula compelling testimony came from a parent and her six-year-old daughter, who was involved in a recent non-fatal crash on her journey to school. Their story brought to bear the need for the work and the power of the FIA Foundation and ATCM’s support. The event culminated in the unveiling of new road safety measures, including 30km/h speed limits around the school area, signage, and traffic calming measures directly outside of the school where the accident occurred.
Not only was the event a successful element of the broader Sustainable Mobility Week, it also served as a critical part of the FIA Foundation’s wider work on the 1.8 Billion Young People for Change Campaign, which seeks to influence the national Government’s SDG commitments around adolescence and road safety and providing an advocacy platform for young people.