Children at Shotley Bridge Primary in County Durham explain how they raised awareness of drink driving in their local community

It was quite hard to choose which issue we should make a difference to so we decided to vote using a special online ballot box. The issue of drink driving won by a long way with 42.9% of the votes, nearly half the class.

We started by doing some research and learnt such a lot about alcohol and the dangers of drink driving. For example, did you know that drinking can affect your liver, brain and heart? Also, did you know that 41 people die every day in the UK due to drink driving and you can be fined up to £5000 if you are caught drink driving?

We were really glad that a PCSO and a road safety officer could come and visit us as they were really interesting and we even got to try out the police uniforms and handcuffs! We tried on special goggles that showed us what our sight would be like if we were over the legal alcohol limits. It was very scary! They also showed us breathalysers.

"We are trying to reduce the risk of innocent people getting hurt in drink driving accidents" Pupil

We decided not to fundraise but instead to raise awareness of the dangers of drink driving. Raising awareness can be just as important as raising money. Changing one person's mind about drink driving might be the one thing that stops someone getting killed in a drink driving accident. We learnt that people can get up to six months in prison for driving with too much alcohol in their bodies. That can go up to fourteen years if death is caused by dangerous driving. We thought it was important that people know this information so we asked local shops if they would display our posters. We thought they would have more impact if they were done by us, rather than by adults.

We also thought there was already lots of information telling people not to drink and drive, but not much saying what the alternative was so we made special non-alcohol drinks and wrote recipes to share with parents. Yum!

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