Every day, we have an opportunity to protect young people from harm. We take on this role as parents, grandparents, family members, teachers, and friends. After all, it takes a village.
But it’s the entire village that’s needed in this era of distracted driving. My wife, Dianne, and I know about it firsthand. Our 21-year-old daughter, Casey Feldman, was a pedestrian killed by a distracted driver. We founded End Distracted Driving (EndDD.org) in 2011 as a project of the Casey Feldman Foundation to stop others from suffering a similar tragedy. We are proud that as of 2018, our presentation has reached more than 475,000 people, mostly teens.
An overwhelming amount of support has come our way through volunteers, financial contributions, and most importantly, pledges to drive safer and to speak up as a passenger being driven by a distracted driver. If you’re reading this, you may have already joined us in our fight against distracted driving. But during this season of giving, there’s even more that we can do to change the future.
Help Us Reach a New Goal
We’re asking for your donation to accelerate our mission to save children’s lives. Your contribution will help us develop a distracted driving awareness curriculum for elementary school students, so we may reach our children well before they become teens.
Why Talk with Young Children About Distracted Driving?
Car crashes are the leading cause of death for children and young people ages five to 21. In our high school talks, more than 60 percent of teens publicly admit that their parents drive distracted. That behavior not only exposes children to an unnecessary risk, but it also teaches them that it is OK to drive distracted. Studies show that teens whose parents drive distracted are more than twice as likely to also drive distracted. If many parents are not being good role models, their children need to be taught how to recognize distracted driving and what to do when their drivers are distracted.
Our New Elementary School Curriculum
EndDD.org has already started working with hundreds of elementary school teachers, curriculum coordinators and public health experts, all of whom have indicated that distracted driving prevention is appropriate for elementary school students. After all, teaching children about the importance of seatbelts created a generation of people who will not allow anyone to drive or ride in a car without a seatbelt. Preliminary indications show that doing the same for distracted driving will energize young children to remind their drivers not to be distracted – even their parents. Some refer to this as the “nag power” of young children. But it works. It will also help to prevent them from becoming distracted drivers themselves when they get behind the wheel years from now—before they have a chance to acquire unsafe habits.
Your child, grandchild, niece, nephew, or friend is a passenger in a vehicle every day. Someday, it will be that child’s turn behind the wheel. If $35,000 is the cost to arm him or her against the dangers of distracted driving, wouldn’t you say it’s worth it?
Any contribution will help us work toward our goal. Please click here to donate online and be a part of the village that protects all our children from tragedies on the road.