$25,000 grant boosts safe mobility for Oregon youth in underserved area

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$25,000 grant boosts safe mobility for Oregon youth in underserved area

Wy'east Middle School students learning bike safety on a ride with Megan Ramey

Wy’east Middle School students learn bike safety on a ride with Megan Ramey in Hood River.

April 12, 2024

For more information, contact Mindy McCartt, ODOT Communications, 503-507-6045

SALEM – We’re one of only five states to receive a grant that will help us make walking, biking, and scooting safer for young people in an underserved area of Oregon.   

"We believe it's crucial to keep our youngest road users safe," said Heidi Manlove, who manages Oregon's Safe Routes to School Education Program at ODOT. "Thanks to this grant, we can give young people better transportation options that are safer, encouraging them to be active while looking out for their safety."

The $25,000 grant is from the Governors Highway Safety Association and the National Road Safety Foundation.

Working with ODOT's Safe Routes to School program and the Hood River County School District, Megan Ramey, a Safe Routes to School manager and the founder of Bikabout, will create a demonstration crosswalk and walking route in Odell. Located about 6 miles south of the Columbia River, Odell boasts a population of just over 3,000.

"By making a special pathway for our young students to walk or ride to school, families in Odell will have a safe way to get to places like the grocery store, park, and bus stop. This project is inspired by the success of a similar one at Hood River Middle School last year. Now, kids in Odell will have a new way to explore their town, giving them more control over how they get around. Families are really excited about this project because they want more options for active transportation," said Ramey.

The goal of this initiative is to give elementary students a safe way to get to school, promoting a community where moving around safely is important. The grant will also support a new, free after-school club for kids in 5th to 8th grade, offering educational and fun activities focused on walking and rolling adventures.

"We're committed to getting young people involved in making transportation safer and more accessible," Manlove added. "By teaming up with local groups and getting our community involved, we're confident these efforts will make a lasting difference in youth safety in Oregon."

This grant will support similar projects in Hawaii, Idaho, Maryland and Texas, all working together to make transportation safer for young people across the country.

For more information, visit Safe Routes to School Program and Governors Highway Safety Association webpage.


About GHSA

The Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA) is a nonprofit association representing the highway safety offices of states, territories, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico. GHSA provides leadership and representation for the states and territories to improve traffic safety, influence national policy, enhance program management and promote best practices. Its members are appointed by their Governors to administer federal and state highway safety funds and implement state highway safety plans. Visit ghsa.org for more information or follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

About The National Road Safety Foundation

The National Road Safety Foundation, Inc. (NRSF) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization dedicated to reducing deaths and injuries on our nation’s roads by promoting safe driving awareness and lifelong education. NRSF produces FREE traffic safety programs on distracted driving, speed and aggression, impaired driving, drowsy driving, driving skills, pedestrian safety and a host of other safety issues. NRSF also sponsors contests to engage teens in promoting safe driving to their peers and in their communities. For more information or to download free programs, visit www.nrsf.org or www.teenlane.org.