Parents for Safe Routes is committed to getting kids to and from school safely. Our goal is to give every child the option to bike or walk safely in their community. We also support carpooling and busing to reduce the number of cars on the road. We envision a community in which every child feels confident and safe while biking or walking to and from school.
We’re working with local schools, municipal leaders and community members to build a strategic partnership that is focused on improving the culture of transportation in our community. Our approach, using the Safe Routes to School 7 E Pyramid, surrounded by our community partners, is illustrated below. As shown, Engineering must serve a foundational role, followed by Education and Enforcement and lastly, Encouragement. Engagement, Evaluation and Equity must be addressed throughout. Parents for Safe Routes sees ourselves leading and/or supporting all of these efforts.
In 2015, our Founder and Chair, Jen Wolosin, became increasingly frustrated with a street near her house and how the dangerous design of the road prevented her children from walking or biking the 0.8 miles to school. She started sending emails, attending city council meetings, talking to parents, and having coffee with anyone who would engage with her. It soon became clear that the problems and roadblocks Jen had witnessed and experienced were not unique to her neighborhood. In January 2017, Jen launched Menlo Park-based Parents for Safe Routes, with the goal of city-wide safety for all. Parents for Safe Routes has had a huge impact in the community and in 2018 was awarded the Silicon Valley Bicycle Coalition's Program of the Year.