GEM Road Safety Charity
Road Safety has been at the heart of everything that we do since our formation as the Company of Veteran Motorists way back in 1932.
Since then, times have changed, but as an organisation our values remain untouched. We still pride ourselves on going the extra mile to look after our members and keep them safe on the roads. Read more about The GEM Story and our 90th anniversary.
Over the years, we recognised the need to do more to promote our aim of reducing death and serious injury on the roads, not just among our members, but within the wider community and we therefore decided to establish our own registered Road Safety Charity in 1985.
We established the GEM Road Safety Charity to enable us to continue to champion road safety, donating to worthwhile causes and initiatives to support projects across the UK that all have one thing in common – keeping people safe on the roads. We support national and local road safety campaigns.
Support the GEM Road Safety Charity
Becoming a GEM member goes beyond award-winning breakdown cover, expert motoring advice, personal service and great value membership benefits… GEM membership also contributes towards the cost to support great road safety causes, which means each member is really making a difference - just by joining us.
How can we help you?
The GEM Road Safety Charity contributes to the safety of all road users throughout the country by making grants and providing financial assistance to support innovative projects that have regional or national significance. We welcome applications from registered charities, road safety organisations, universities and groups with a clearly defined and well planned project.
Applications are assessed by the Board of Trustees following consultation with GEM’s Executive Council and all applications should contain a plan, timeline and proposed budget for the project. It is unlikely that the Trustees will consider applications that seek to extend core funding or those previously funded by a statutory agency but each application is taken on its own merit.
We have closed applications for funding in 2022. Please come back soon to see when the next funding round opens.
- Mrs L Ward (Chairman)
- Mr M Cooke
- Mrs Emma Tugwell-Smith
- Miss M Emms
- Mr B Johnson
The Charity's Recent Campaigns
Looking out for Laura
Funding from the GEM Road Safety Charity has recently helped the British Horse Society (BHS) to raise awareness of danger involving horses and riders in one of the UK’s highest-risk areas. New statistics reveal a worrying 134 per cent increase in road incidents with horses in the north-west of England. As part of its Look out for Laura campaign, the BHS has released two new videos to encourage drivers to pass horses safely on the road. The videos tell the story of two horse riders who rely on riding as a way to de-stress from their hectic, working lives. Both encourage drivers to think about how they look at, and empathise with, horse riders when they are out on the road. The Charity provided funding to assist with dissemination of findings across Lancashire, one of the country’s highest-risk counties.
GEM Road Safety Charity chair Laura Ward said: “As an enthusiastic horse rider myself, I was pleased that the Charity had the opportunity to be part of the ‘Look out for Laura’ initiative. Most of my riding on the road – over many years – has taken place without incident, but every now and then I have experienced what can arise when another road user fails to respect the time and space my horse and I need to stay safe.
Independent evaluation of Look out for Laura shows the resource has been well received – and further sharing of its messages will now take place. A change in attitude is more important than ever, with more than 500 horse fatalities reported on the roads since 2010. Alan Hiscox, BHS director of safety, said: “The number of incidents involving horses on Britain’s roads remains far too high. “It is vital that we continue to urge drivers to be more considerate when passing horses and aware of how to do this safely.”
PACTS Roads Policing and its Contribution to Road Safety
Some 1,800 people die on UK roads each year – more than twice the number of deaths from homicides and terrorism combined. A further 25,000+ people are seriously injured.
This PACTS report, ‘‘Roads policing and its contribution to road safety’ , published 4th June 2020, investigates links between roads policing, compliance with traffic laws and road casualties. It summarises the policy and responsibility framework for policing in the UK and identifies trends in enforcement, compliance and casualties relating to the “fatal four” offences (speeding, drink and drug driving, non-wearing of seat belts and mobile phone use). It summarises the evidence on the effectiveness of general and specific enforcement techniques; and it identifies opportunities to improve roads policing and road safety.
The report was produced thanks to a grant from the GEM Motoring Assist Road Safety Trust, with additional support from MIB, Jenoptik and AlcoSense.
The Honest Truth
Road traffic collisions are the number one cause of death among 17 – 24 year olds. The award winning The Honest Truth is a national charity that was founded following one such fatal collision in South Devon where three young people were sadly killed. Working with Approved Driving Instructors, road safety partnerships, Police, Fire and Rescue Services and the military they have been working tirelessly since 2009 to provide quality road safety education to prevent families and communities from ever having to experience the pain of losing a loved one through a collision. The GEM Charity were pleased to award The Honest Truth a grant towards the redevelopment of their unique resources, aimed at learner drivers and their parents. These resources are engaging and, making use of the latest behaviour change techniques, use positive messaging to challenge and change behaviour to ultimately reduce the risk to the young driver and others on the road.
Sussex Safer Roads Partnership – In Car VR Project
The Charity were pleased to be able to make a grant to the Sussex Safer Roads Partnership towards the cost of an innovative 360 degree video aimed at young drivers and their passengers. The video puts participants in the passenger seat of a car being driven by a young man the morning after a night out. A number of different things occur during that morning’s journey to college, and participants are encouraged to identify who presents the most risk: the driver, the passengers or both in each scenario. Using behavioural change techniques the film aims to highlight those risks and how they can be avoided to keep people safe on the roads.