A Helmet Ahead: Over the last 50 years, the streets of Vietnam have experienced an invasion of the country’s most popular—and convenient—mode of transportation: the motor scooter. Both time efficient and cost efficient, the Vietnamese have deep emotional ties to this mode of transportation, but there remains a lack of awareness of the underlying dangers of motorbike travel, particularly the proportion of children under 18 who commonly do not wear head protection.  Scooters are seldom just personal vehicles, and a scooter often serves as a shared form of transportation for entire families at a time, children included. Though scooters are a fundamental component of Vietnamese culture and personal expression, helmet awareness and compliance remains low in Vietnam for children. While laws have recently mandated helmet use for those over the age of 6, most citizens and law enforcement officials fail to see the importance of helmets and there is meek enforcement. Furthermore, infants and toddlers, who aren’t protected by law, are the most at risk for fatal injuries to the brain in a collision. The A Helmet Ahead initiative sends American high school students to provide lightweight, durable helmets to Vietnamese students and to educate Vietnamese families on the importance of road safety.

Preschool Teachers line up to hand out student helmets

The first helmet giveaway in Binh Duong Vietnam was a complete success. Every student from our first adopted Vietnamese American Preschool was given a helmet to wear, and with rule changes in the school to make the use of helmets mandatory, we expect the children will use the helmets and this will send a strong message to the community. The ceremony for the helmet giveaway embodies why this work is of upmost importance. The children put on an adorable fashion show reinforcing just how wonderful Vietnamese culture is, and how we all enjoyed helping in a small way to protect the youth of this great Nation moving forward.

Youth Fashion Show Participants
Youth Karate Presentation