Posts Tagged ‘easter 2011’


Friday, April 22nd, 2011

Sadly, 14 Australians lost their lives on our roads at Easter last year – and many more were seriously injured.

Take care on the roads over this Easter weekend, and, if you’d like to join with us to encourage everyone in the broader community to think carefully about road safety over the long weekend, please share the following JBRT link on Facebook (if you’re a Facebook member):

This Easter, please drive safely on our roads. Last year, 14 Australians lost their lives. To find out more about the impact of road trauma on the lives of those who survive or are left behind, please visit Help spread the word – cut and paste this in your status.

There has been an astounding response to Journey Beyond Road Trauma online community since the official launch at Easter last year, with people sharing stories about recent losses and trauma as well as events that had an impact on them many years ago. Emergency services personnel, people living with serious injuries and counsellors have also joined the community.

With more than 1,800 members on the main site and the Facebook page and around 27,000 visits and 206,000 page views, it is a passionate community of people finding a voice and strength.

We are pleased to report that most of our aims are being met. Are people supporting and empathising with each other?

Yes, many members are engaging with each other another publicly while many many more are also helping and supporting each other privately. A group of community members recently met in Adelaide face to face after meeting each other online.

Is my story being used to educate others about safe driving practices?

Yes, we are pleased to announce that your story will now make a DIFFERENCE. We are about to launch classroom resources for the site, sponsored by the Alcohol and Education Rehabilitation Foundation. The teachers’ guide will be available on the site so that schools around Australia can more effectively and easily use the community and our members’ stories to educate future drivers about the effects of careless driving.

The community is also regularly contacted by welfare workers, schools and university students who want to include JBRT in their education programs.

Can community members conduct their own road safety campaigns and as a community collectively work together to make sure our roads are safer?

This is one of our aims that will be realised as the site grows and more funding becomes available to develop the functionality to do this. We are about to commence the process of raising funding to develop the campaign section in the website, which will include sophisticated group functionality for campaigning, event organising tools, online petitions and downloadable templates. The campaign section will also include educational advice from road safety experts who will interact with community members via live chats on road safety, news feeds, statistics and links.

JBRT is inspired by the success of the MADD (Mothers Against Drunk Driving) model. From its humble beginnings 25 years ago, MADD has evolved into one of the most widely supported and respected non-profit organisations in America. What began as a handful of angry mothers with a mission to stop drink driving has evolved into an educated and effective group of road safety campaigners. These mothers, by collaborating with each other and utilising the guidance of road safety experts, have now helped save thousands of lives.

Are your stories being delivered across other platforms to increase the public’s awareness of the effects of road trauma?

Yes, this year Sunrise ran a series of five stories (with one to go) from the community. Other members have been interviewed by 7:30 Report, News Ltd and the RAA. Big thanks to our members for sharing their story and spreading the word.

Youth Justice conference convenor Lorna Edwards from Newcastle in NSW used the online community in a powerful way for a young man charged with dangerous driving.

Ms Edwards chose a story from the JBRT site about a man who accidentally killed a young child as a result of dangerous driving when he was 18 years old. This story was read out by a police officer at the initial conference.

An Outcome Plan, which was the sentencing option, stipulated that the young man charged with dangerous driving had to visit the JBRT site and select three stories to print out and send off to The Department of Juvenile Justice.

Ms Edwards says it was a ‘great’ conference and has recommended using this process in the future for driving related cases.

Neurosurgical nurse at the Royal Hobart Hospital Tasmania, Linda Nichols presented a paper at the Australasian Neuroscience Nursing Conference in Christchurch titled ‘Moral and Ethical Decision Making’.

The paper focused on the factors that influence decisions made by parents following a motor vehicle accident involving young persons. Ms Nichols promoted JBRT as an avenue for parents who have lost children or who are supporting the seriously injured, to tell their stories so as to have a voice and make a change.

If you would like to know more please call producer Sandra Cook on 0413 146013.