NEW DIGITAL PLATFORM FOR CHILD SAFETY CHAMPIONS

A new DIGITAL learning platform featuring a family of cartoon characters has been launched to improve child road safety in a post Covid-19 world.

The free-to-access service has been produced by Birmingham-based DriveSafe & StaySafe, creators of The Conies, successors to the likes of Tufty the Squirrel and the Green Cross Code Man as the new children’s champions of road safety.

The traffic cone-shaped Conies and their comic adventures have already inspired more than 30,000 children attending primary schools across the West Midlands to increase their safety knowledge using ‘The Conies: Walking to School Safely Journal’ with their teachers in the classroom.

The new digital learning platform, which has been funded by the Rees Jeffreys Road Fund, contains Conies-themed interactive resources and learning activities on road safety that can be downloaded in PDF format, as well as videos of The Conies’ adventures.

Fay Goodman, Founder and Creator of The Conies and Managing Director of DriveSafe & StaySafe, said: “As they prepare to return to school following the lengthy Covid-19 lockdown, our new resource platform will offer children support on how to keep safe when out and about. With the likelihood of pre-pandemic traffic levels coupled with continued measures for social distancing, some children may feel apprehensive about the sudden changes to their world.

“Our Conies characters are on a mission to help children understand the need for social distancing, not only to keep themselves safe but also those adults around them.  The platform will continue to be populated with ongoing support information pertinent to the circumstances in which children find themselves.”

Fay added: “We are thrilled that the new digital platform has been made possible by the support of the Rees Jeffreys Road Fund.”

Andy Street, the Mayor of the West Midlands, commented: “The health and environmental benefits of children walking to school rather than being dropped off are clear, and at Transport for West Midlands we are doing all we can to encourage this. This new service launched by DriveSafe & StaySafe is a great initiative, and something that will undoubtedly help support TfWM’s work and encourage more children to walk to school.”

Fay Goodman added: “Our digital platform will provide an opportunity to help children adapt to the safety guidelines regarding Covid-19. Children are very tactile, so it is important to guide them through this unusually difficult time compassionately.  The Conies are fun but very safety conscious - as their Walking to School Safely Journal and our new online resource activity demonstrate.

“We now have a different challenge to be aware of children’s psychological needs.  Children respond well to fun and humour, so what better way to teach and guide them than using the cute Conies characters - mischief included!”

The free digital learning platform is available at theconies.org. The Conies are also at www.instagram.com/theconiesworld and at www.facebook.com/TheConiesWorld/

* TfWM - Transport for West Midlands, the public body responsible for overseeing public transport in the West Midlands.

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