An international student group accompanied by Toyota Autoparts Philippines Inc. made a guided tour in Santa Rosa City’s Road Safety Kiddie Park on August 8 to see the first safety theme park in the country located at the second level of Robinsons Mall Santa Rosa branch.  The park is a mall’s partnership project with the City Government of Santa Rosa and Department of Education to promote road safety education to children ages 5 to 10 and to train kids to become responsible road users.

The tourists enjoyed fun and interactive experience in a simulated road setting with the kids. Around 30 international exchange students from Singapore had the chance to mingle with 36 Grade 3 pupils and 22 junior Boy Scouts (Grades 4 to 6) from Santa Rosa Elementary School Central-I.

Newly elected City Mayor Danilo Ramon S. Fernandez and Schools Division Superintendent Helen A. Ramos graced the event. Also present were Robinsons Mall general branch manager Ms. Arlene G. Magtibay and representatives of one of the park’s established partners Rotary Club of Santa Rosa.

Grade 3 pupils from 18 elementary public schools are the main beneficiaries of the project who can avail of the facilities and services of the theme park for free. DepEd Division of Santa Rosa City schedules the after class visitation of all public elementary schools each month through a division memorandum.

Under the supervision of Mr. Antonio B. Bato, Road Safety Kiddie Park Manager from the City Government, designated City Government employees ensure park operations during weekdays and can offer walk-in or appointment service for free.

The project that was made possible through a signed Memorandum of Agreement between the City Government of Santa Rosa, Robinsons Mall and Department of Education since March 2013 is yearly renewed.  It started as a mobile park that was launched in the same mall in 2011. MOA signing for the contract renewal this year is scheduled tentatively on September 30.

The road safety education in the city started as early as 2007 through the Toyota Traffic Safety Summit and the establishment of the Road Safety Academy and Road Safety Mobile Park in 2009 by Toyota Autoparts Philippines Inc., its major proponent.  The road safety education program has been supported by the City Government of Santa Rosa from the start and continued to thrive through strategic partnership with Rotary Club of Santa Rosa, University of the Philippines – National Center for Transportation Studies and Boy Scouts of the Philippines.

The signing of the Deed of Donation and turn-over of the equipment to the City Government was made official on January 17, 2013.  The City Government of Santa Rosa is currently funding the maintenance of the theme park.

Benefiting from the said project for more than three years, the Department of Education Division of Santa Rosa City underscores the inclusion of road safety education in classroom learning activities particularly to elementary students and supports the development of learning materials and teacher trainings.

Lea Imelda E. Ibayan
Project Development Officer II-SGOD, Division of Santa Rosa City