Over 20 schools from across the region claimed prizes for Movin’March 2021, an annual Greater Wellington initiative that encourages kids and their whānau to walk or wheel to school and reduce carbon emissions.
Movin’March hosts four competitions to reward students for contributing to Greater Wellington’s targets to reduce transport-generated carbon emissions by 30 percent and achieve a 40 percent increase in ‘mode share’ to active and public transport by 2030.
Greater Wellington travel choice coordinator Kirsty Barr says, “This year we got a stunning 132 schools on board with a combined total of over 37,000 students across the Wellington region potentially taking part in Movin’March.
“We counted a total of 162,594 walking or wheeling trips at many of our Movin’March schools which equates to approximately 81,300 kilometres of active travel. To put those numbers into perspective, that's the equivalent of children walking from Cape Reinga to Bluff nearly 40 times - that’s an amazing result.”
In the WOW passport challenge, schools from all districts in the Wellington region won $400 MYRIDE vouchers for their students.
The winning schools are Wainuiomata Primary, Normandale, Our Lady of Kāpiti, Paraparaumu Beach School, Papakowhai, Fraser Crescent, Birchville, St Mary’s Carterton, Fernridge, Berhampore and Ridgway Schools.
“It’s worth a special mention that for the first time Natone Park School recorded the highest number of walking or wheeling trips not only for Porirua city, but for the entire region.”
“This school noted a total of 1815 walking and wheeling trips over March which equates to about 19 trips per student,” says Kirsty.
In addition to the WOW passport challenge, a total of 44 lucky winners for the art challenge, Movin’Minds competition and whānau photo competition came away with prizes that included scooters and helmets, a tour of Weta Workshop, and other adventure experiences.
“It was awesome to see that this year we continued to get very positive feedback from schools about the programme’s kinder-on-the-planet merchandise and te Reo resources,” says Kirsty.
“Students and the community absolutely embraced these important additions to the programme and in many cases students lead the way with this new direction.”
Greater Wellington Chair, Daran Ponter says, “For twelve years Greater Wellington has celebrated children and whānau who choose active ways to get to school, and this year it’s plain to see from the high recorded numbers our communities are keen to celebrate the cause too.
“The great thing about Movin’March is we all benefit from the ongoing benefits of kids choosing an active form of travel over a car - it’s good for young people’s physical and mental health, it increases their independence and it’s the sustainable option!
“A big congratulations to all the students, schools and families who got involved this year - we’ll see you next year,” adds Cr Ponter.
Competition updates at www.facebook.com/movinmarch.
More resources and information on Movin’March at: www.movinmarch.com
Cr Ros Connelly, Mike George (Porirua City Council Road Safety Coordinator), Justin Wong (Wellington City Council Sustainable Transport Coordinator), Kirsty Barr (hidden!), Cr Daran Ponter, Bruce Johnston, (Transport Safety Coordinator for Kapiti Coast District Council).