Journeys to school have never been brighter in Cashel. On Friday, 23rd March St. John the Baptist Girls School launched their own Walk to School initiative entitled ‘Best Foot Forward’ or BFF day as part of their bid for their Fourth Green-Schools Flag for Sustainable Transport.
BFF days, similar to WOW days run nationwide, are weekly action days where everyone tries to travel green to school by either walking, park & striding, carpooling or taking the bus.
The Green-Schools Committee at St. John the Baptist Girls School put their own twist into the event by identifying three separate Park & Stride locations where people could meet and walk to school. They then colour coded the routes red, yellow and blue. To send home this idea, everyone wore the colour of the route they took to school. This lead to a hugely colourful event when the three ‘coloured routes’ merged at the school gates. Over 260 students and parents participated in the event which was followed by a special travel assembly in the school hall. At the assembly, prizes (provided by an Taisce) were given out for a poster competition to promote sustainable travel and students then performed their travel songs and rap for parents. One of the major awards of the day was the Golden Boot Award. This is an award given to the class with the most walkers over a given period of time and was won by 2nd Class. It is hoped that Fridays will be BFF day in the school.
Green-Schools Travel is an initiative run by An Taisce and funded by the Department of Transport. Over 850 schools in Ireland are involved in the initiative which aims to encourage sustainable transport on the school journey and increase awareness of the impacts of travel on the environment. Traffic congestion is a primary problem outside school gates and it is hoped that days such as BFF will serve to reduce this and further enable the adoption of healthier lifestyles and sustainable travel choices for the next generation.
According to Aileen Flanagan and Gayle Noonan (GS Coordinators). ‘The BFF Launch Day was a huge success. Both children and parents really embraced the concept and we had a great turn out at each of the park & stride locations. Hopefully from now on we will see more children putting their best foot Friday and walking to school each Friday.