FIA Foundation AGM: Innovating for Impact, Advocating for Change
The FIA Foundation was joined by FIA member clubs in sending out a powerful call to save lives on the world’s roads, to address fuel economy and promote sustainable mobility in an agenda for public health and protection of the environment, at its AGM on 4 December in Doha, Qatar.
Themed ‘Innovating for Impact, Advocating for Change’ the FIA Foundation AGM highlighted the range of activities supported throughout the year and previewed the agenda for the next 12 months which will be critical for sustainable mobility with key global policy processes culminating in 2015. The meeting saw the launch of the Foundation’s Annual Report, which details some of the innovative work being undertaken by the Foundation’s grant partners, including iRAP and Global NCAP. There was also a strong focus in the meeting on child safety programmes, both through grant support to FIA member clubs around the world and through demonstration projects undertaken by the Foundation with partners including AIP Foundation, Save the Children and the Gonzalo Rodriguez Foundation. FIA member club delegates were updated on major developments over the past 12 months on the Global Fuel Economy Initiative (GFEI) and global road safety advocacy and programmatic work supported by the FIA Foundation. In a separate meeting, the FIA Institute highlighted the latest advances in motor sport safety research funded by the Foundation.
The meeting, hosted by the Qatar Motor & Motorcycle Federation, saw the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding between the Government of Qatar and the International Road Assessment Programme to undertake iRAP road infrastructure safety assessments in the Gulf state in a bid to raise high risk roads to a three star minimum safety standard. iRAP Chairman John Dawson was joined by Yousef Al-Emadi, representing the 'Ashghal' Public Works Authority. Mr Al-Emadi said: “Our collaboration with iRAP represents work of the highest importance. Together we hope to eliminate One and Two Star Roads in Qatar. We have entered into this collaboration in order to provide safe roads for the people of Qatar, and we recognise that this also marks an important contribution to the Decade of Action for Road Safety 2011-2020. We are proud to be joining iRAP in its mission to achieve a world free of high risk roads. In so doing, this work promises to save many lives – there can be no more noble cause.”
New trustees were elected at the AGM, with Lord Robertson of Port Ellen, Chairman of the Commission for Global Road Safety, Gus Lagman, President of the Automobile Association, and Miquel Nadal, Executive Director of the RACC Foundation, approved by the Foundation’s members as new members of the charity’s Board of Trustees. The Foundation’s Chairman, Tim Keown, paid tribute to the outgoing trustees: Boris Perko, former Chairman Carlos Macaya, and former FIA President (and founder of the Foundation) Max Mosley. Earl Jarret, President of the Automobile Club of Jamaica, and three FIA-nominated trustees, Brian Gibbons, Graham Stoker and Nick Craw, were all re-elected for a second three-year term.
In his speech to the meeting Tim Keown called for action to advance the Decade of Action for Road Safety agenda, stressed the importance of the post-2015 discussions and welcomed the close cooperation of the Foundation and the FIA in advocating for safer roads worldwide. He pointed out that 500 children are killed on the roads every day and urged greater effort to tackle this appalling waste and loss of life.
Sheila Watson, FIA Foundation Director of Environment and Research, who coordinates GFEI updated the AGM on significant progress made by the fuel economy initiative over the past 12 months. The FIA Foundation also invited Drew Kodjak, Executive Director of the International Council on Clean Transportation (ICCT), to make a keynote presentation on the status of fuel economy worldwide. Major steps forward have been taken by the GFEI recently including: inclusion of the initiative in the G20 agenda where Heads of State prioritised action on vehicle fuel economy; highlighting of the GFEI at the UN Climate Summit where FIA Foundation Director General Saul Billingsley presented the initiative in the chamber of the UN General Assembly; and the core inclusion of the GFEI in the process to design the post-2015 Sustainable Development Goals as an ‘accelerator’ for sustainable energy.
Delegates from the FIA and its member clubs worldwide joined the new ‘#SaveKidsLives’ global campaign to protect children on the roads. The campaign, presented at the AGM by the Foundation’s Advocacy and Communications Director, Avi Silverman, has been developed by the FIA Foundation in partnership with other road safety stakeholders and will be taken forward in collaboration with FIA clubs together with a wide coalition of partners worldwide. #SaveKidsLives is a call for world leaders to ensure that road safety is included as a global priority in the new agenda for global development which is being negotiated by all governments at the United Nations. The campaign also calls for the national and local actions urgently needed to protect children around the world. As delegates heard, FIA clubs are often in prime position to lead national advocacy for the life saving measures which are vital to protect children to be put in place. The main feature of the campaign is the Child Declaration for Road Safety which has been inspired by children around the world, and reflects the ‘Safe System’ measures needed to save lives on the roads as elaborated in the Global Plan for the Decade of Action for Road Safety.
Saul Billingsley, FIA Foundation Director General said: “I am delighted that we have been able to host the launch of a new partnership for safer roads between Qatar and iRAP at our AGM. This is an example of the type of innovative approach leading to measurable impact that defines the Foundation’s grant-making, and can make a big contribution to preventing deaths and injuries here in Qatar. Our meeting today demonstrates that there is widespread support for and engagement with the Foundation’s programmes and advocacy on road safety and the environment amongst our member clubs, and with the addition of our new trustees we have a strong team for the work that lies ahead in 2015.”