Empowering local communities to make roads safe in Bishkek

Kyrgyzstan, Road Safety Governance and Capacity Building

EASST partners, Road Safety Kyrgyzstan have launched a new project aimed at encouraging greater participation and engagement amongst local communities to promote road safety in Bishkek.

Earlier this year, EASST published a report on pedestrian safety in Bishkek which found that one in eight of all pedestrian deaths in Bishkek in 2017 occured at just 15 specific sites. Addressing road safety from a very localised level is therefore essential in making an impact and reducing the number of people killed and injured on the roads every year.

This new project by Road Safety Kyrgyzstan is unique in that it is very first time that local communities in Bishkek, rather than government level officials, have been given the opportunity to voice concerns about road safety in their local area.

Road Safety Kyrgyzstan have started by conducting a survey of over 3000 residents, business owners, public transport drivers, taxi drivers, school teachers, and school children – asking them to share their views on the main causes of road traffic collisions and what issues are preventing effective road safety management in the city, and how road safety can be improved.

The next phase of the project will see community representatives form working groups based on their individual districts to analyse the survey results and develop a set of recommendations which will be used to lobby the City Mayor to address road safety. The working groups will be fully participative, involving all members of the community such as teachers, policemen, house committees, and residents – all with a shared aim to improve road safety in their local areas.

This project is being implemented with the support of the Soros Foundation in two administrative districts of Bishkek – Sverdlovsk and Leninsky.