The National Center for Safe Routes to School is now accepting applications for the 2009 James L. Oberstar Safe Routes to School Award. The deadline for applications is July 15, 2009. To access the award application and criteria, please visit here.
The Oberstar Award is given annually by the National Center for Safe Routes to School to an exemplary Safe Routes to School program in the United States. The 2009 Oberstar Award will recognize outstanding achievement by a school or community in conducting a SRTS program that benefited from the Federal SRTS funding awarded by its State. The Award specifically will recognize a school with a Safe Routes to School program that has achieved success while overcoming challenges in implementing and/or sustaining the program.
"We realize that programs with outstanding achievements have had to find ways to address local challenges," says Lauren Marchetti, Director of the National Center for Safe Routes to School. "We want to recognize current issues affecting our schoolchildren and how schools are dealing with these issues. We ask the applicants to describe how Safe Routes to School addressed any type of adversity or challenge — in their own terms and within the realities of their own environments."
The award is named for Congressman Oberstar (D-MN) to honor his dedication to American schoolchildren as the pioneer for the National Safe Routes to School Program. Oberstar, current Chairman of the U.S. House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, sponsored the Safe Routes to School legislation that strives to create safe settings to enable more parents and children to walk and bicycle to school.
States have announced funding for more than 5,200 schools and communities throughout the U.S. to conduct Safe Routes to School programs as a way to meet the challenges posed by safety, health and environmental concerns. Please pass along this call for applications to Safe Routes to School programs in your community.