FCCLA members Lauren Black, Abbie Mengerink (chapter president), and Brooklyn Weaks, along with advisor Mrs. Ragan hold a $1,000 check from FACTS.
For the third year in a row, Van Wert High School’s FCCLA students were awarded a $1,000 grant from Families Acting for Community Traffic Safety (FACTS) to help bring awareness to a traffic safety issue. This year’s student-led project will focus on distracted driving.
The 20-member student organization, led by the chapter’s president, Abbie Mengerink, wants to bring awareness to the many distractions that can occur while driving other than texting. Their slogan, “Distractions Cause Reactions” emphasizes the cause and effect of choices made while behind the wheel.
“Distracted driving is rarely associated with rolling windows down or changing the radio station,” said Mengerink. “We think texting and driving is an important topic, but we wanted to bring awareness to the other types of distractions.”
FCCLA members will be conducting a survey of their peers to gather information about student driving habits and whether distracted driving has played a role in their lives. They hope to use this data to focus their project in order to make the biggest impact.
The grant money is earmarked for posters to be hung around school to bring awareness to the issue, as well as the purchase of silicon bracelets for students who pledge to not drive while distracted. The group also hopes to bring in distracted driving simulators to enhance the reality of the dangers of driving while distracted.