Best sustainable travel initiative - Education

Hari Bear's Big Adventure

Haringey Walks initiative required a promotion within the borough schools so we created a walking relay for our Hari bear. Engaging with every infant school in the borough to encourage them to join a fun walking exercise that showed them their borough and introduced them to other schools. The focus was on International Walking Month so included knowledge and information of the way others get to school too. We also incorporated some Decade of Action images. This was an important engagement exercise for our Air Quality Apprentice to instigate the ideas about travel relating to air pollution to all of our primary schools too.

Local Authority contact details

Haringey Council Smarter Travel Team officer Wendy Thorogood & Ishen Stewart-DowdingOfficer Air Quality Apprentice 020 8489 5351

Who was involved & what was their role?

Wendy Thorogood & Air Quality Apprentice Ishen Stewart-Dowding created the walk and the promotional items in house, planned & coordinated the schools walking schedule. Plus the photography from the month long event. Schools route planned and coordinated participants, promoted the Walking Month messages through assemblies and drawing activities and used Hari to continue walking initiatives.

Details of cost budget, sources of funding

Officer time in coordinating the route and school participation plus Hari Bear = £4.50 Bear £6 jogging suit £7 jacket. This was part of our larger Hari Bear scheme encouraging walking competition within school so very low cost,

How was it developed?

Aim: involve our schools to promote walking as an opportunity to promote Healthy Active Responsible and Independent travel. Plan: We drew up a route plan on a large map of the borough. Each walk had to be a maximum of .9 of a mile as each group would have to walk that route back.Every infant school had opportunity to join the adventure. Schools risk asses the route organise permissions for trip and photos. Prior to event we sent a presentation to promote International Walking Month Route and timing: We included only 4 schools per day as Haringey officers would be walking with each school. Schedules were sent to each participating school. Recording statistics: Google maps gave route and mileage, number of people walking was important as we counted everyone’s return route too. A table was completed every day with miles between schools recording number participants plus the total miles travelled. The scheme was linked to Haringey Obesity Alliance pledge

What was the outcome, including information on future plans - one-off, on-going, develop further?

Great engagement tool, highlighting the diversity of the borough & the fun with a virtually free form of exercise. Hari was greeted at school with excitement & enjoyed carrying him around and using the observation card. Sparked a lot of imagination and pupil participation was excellent. Schools now use Hari bear to promote actively travelling to school, using the additional resources offered: Hari bear, wall charts, posters, award certificates, badges and Hari’s Walking Journal that encourages the children to work with parents on what they have done with Hari when they take him home from school. The schools were very inspired and have gone on to use him on many events and outings promoting the idea that everyone can take part, even the children who have to be driven to school can take him home to get out and about walking at the weekends and take part some way. The AQ apprentice was able to link up with schools following this exercise and personalise her assembly presentation.

How does this initiative or project meet the criteria?

We creatively used the relay idea to engage with the majority of our schools, 719 people joined in learning about the geography of the borough, linking children’s love of adventure and teddy bears appealed to them all. The photographic evidence on Haringey’s website pictorially show the fun we all had.. This was a very cost effective initiative as the bear and the outfit cost under £20. Very easy to emulate on various scales. We had several special needs pupils taking part who enjoyed and benefitted from the event. Even the mainstream pupils were surprised to learn they could walk so far and we learned more about each school too. Everyone taking part benefitted from meeting pupils and teachers at the next school. Many of the teachers had not met the schools they walked to. It showed everyone how very different they were but it was great to be part of part of A Big Adventure.

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