Bonheiden’s school kids convince parents not to drop them by car
The municipality of Bonheiden, in the Antwerp province, has won the Belfius Smart Belgium Award 2017 on Wednesday in the category of municipalities with less than 30.000 inhabitants, because the children of the community succeeded in convincing their parents not to drop them at school by car.
30 tons CO2
Students coming to school by bike or on foot could earn ducats, which they could use as a means of payment on the local fair. “Before the campaign only 12% of all school children came to school by bike or on foot”, explains Bonheiden’s mayor, Guido Vaganée. “Today this is 60%. Last year they covered 146.000 km altogether, or the equivalent of almost 30 tons of CO2 emissions.”
Children seem to convince each other more easily to use their bicycle or to go on foot. Besides, they also stimulate their parents to do so. “Now we are looking at other ways to use the ducats, as a means of payment for the swimming pool, the skating rink or the cinema”, Vaganée continues.
“Maybe we can even extend the campaign for commuting traffic and stimulate teachers to leave the car at home too. If we could transform the ducats in a real cryptocoin, based on the block chain technology, that would be great in this digital era.”
The organization of the Belfius Smart Belgium Awards received 233 submissions, coming from companies, schools, hospitals, universities, research institutes, cities, municipalities and local authorities.