$15,000 to be Awarded for “Create Real Impact” -Safe Teen Driving Messages

$15,000 to be Awarded for “Create Real Impact”

Safe Teen Driving Messages

 No one should experience the tragedy of a distracted driving wreck. Unfortunately, the number of deaths and injuries as result of bad choices behind the wheel continue to rise.

That’s why the Create Real Impact contest is so important. Students across the United States can win cash prizes for their creative efforts discouraging their peers from distracted and reckless driving. Submissions of artwork, videos, music or creative writing for the fall 2017 contest are being accepted now through October 6 at www.createrealimpact.com. Once again, up to $15,000 in educational grants will be awarded.

“We believe that peer-to-peer led projects help motivate and encourage students to spread their solutions to reckless and distracted driving, the number one killer of teens in America,” said Kelly Browning, Ph.D., Executive Director, Impact Teen Drivers. “Helping others make smart choices saves lives.”

The Create Real Impact contest was initiated in 2009 as a proactive solution to the deadly epidemic of inattentive teen driving. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has issued a call to action to combat a sudden and dramatic rise in traffic deaths the past two years, many caused by reckless actions or drivers not paying attention to the road. Teens continue to account for the largest proportion of drivers involved in deadly distracted driving crashes.

They include Sydnee W., who died in a crash just shy of her 18th birthday as she was texting behind the wheel and not wearing her seatbelt. Alex B. was 17 when she crashed her truck on the way to school while texting. 19 year old Heather L. was speeding and texting when she crashed through a guardrail on her way home from work. And 16 year old Ashley Johnson was sending messages on her phone when she lost control of the vehicle she was driving and hit a pickup head-on.

There are too many stories like these – of real families who never would have imagined they wouldn’t see their loved one again.

In 2007, as a response to the growing problem, California Casualty partnered with law enforcement and educational groups to create Impact Teen Drivers, a nationwide education program utilizing a multifaceted approach to stem the tide of distracted and reckless driving. The goal was to find proactive solutions to the deadly epidemic of inattentive teen driving and prevent more tragedies. Create Real Impact is a component of the program that focuses on peer-to-peer creative expression.

Since its inception, Impact Teen Drivers has reached more than two million teens. California Casualty continues to support the nonprofit and provides funds for the awards. California Casualty representatives helped present checks to the winning schools and awardees.

“The importance of this contest can’t be overstated,” said California Casualty CEO Beau Brown. “While insurance can replace a mangled vehicle, we can’t replace a teenager’s life. In a split second, everything for that family changes forever; it’s a terrible tragedy that no one should endure.”

Students ages 14-22 can find inspiration, see past winning entries, learn the rules, and enter their work at www.createrealimpact.com. The deadline for submissions for the 2017 fall competition is October 6. Awards range from $500 to $1,500.

Anyone interested in more information or a presentation can contact Kelly Browning at 916.733.7432 or by email, kbrowning@impactteendrivers.org.

This article is furnished by California Casualty. Founded in 1914, California Casualty has been serving the needs of educators for more than 65 years and is the only auto and home insurance company to earn the trust and endorsement of the NEA. As a result, NEA members qualify for exceptional rates, deductibles waived for vandalism or collisions to your vehicle parked at school, holiday or summer skip payment plans and free Identity Defense protection – exclusive benefits not available to the general public. Learn how to save by getting a quote at www.neamb.com/autohome, or by calling 1.800.800.9410.