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Keeping it real: an education program where the presenters are the power.

Haffke, C

General

ACRS conference 2008

The Spinal Education Awareness Team (SEAT) has shared road safety and injury prevention messages with more than 1.1 million children in the past 21 years.

SEAT is a service of the Spinal Injuries Association and our team of volunteer presenters, who all have paraplegia or quadriplegia, are the indisputable power behind the program. The purpose of this paper is to share how SEAT is inspiring children aged four to 17 to stay safe on the roads: as drivers, passengers, pedestrians and cyclists.

SEAT’s aim is to reduce spinal cord injuries in Queensland and with road trauma being the number one cause of all such injuries, and the most at-risk age group being from 15 to 30, changing the behaviours and attitudes of children towards road safety is crucial.

The paper will include details on the development and key messages of SEAT; methods used to inspire safety on our roads; and evaluation procedures, including the analysis of qualitative and quantitative data from presenters, teachers and, most importantly, students, as well as medical data demonstrating that spinal cord injuries are at an all-time low in Queensland, coinciding with the success of SEAT.

The paper will demonstrate that through an education program that “keeps it real”, risky behaviours by young road users can be influenced.