The SafeLIGHT Foundation welcomed its 2023-24 class of Teen Ambassadors with an orientation on Aug. 19. Chicago-area students in the program serve as safe driving ambassadors with their high school communities to promote and encourage responsible driving. Teen Ambassadors who graduate from the program will earn college scholarships.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), motor vehicle crashes are one of the leading causes of death for U.S. teens. About 2,800 teens lost their lives in car crashes in 2020. That’s an average of eight teens a day.
“The Teen Ambassador program was created in response to the alarming rate of teen fatalities and injuries from traffic crashes,” said Nikki Zollar, Chairman of the SafeLIGHT Foundation. “Because driver inexperience is a leading contributor to crashes and injuries for teen drivers, we partner with law enforcement professionals, schools and parents to help reinforce safe driving messages to prevent crashes and save lives.”
The Teen Ambassador program is sponsored by Donate Life Illinois and Gift of Hope. The program is also supported by the Illinois Secretary of State’s Office, which is a strong advocate of teen driver safety.
This year’s class includes students from Southland College Prep in Richton Park, Morton West in Berwyn, Alan B. Shepard in Palos Heights, Mother McAuley in Chicago and Marian Catholic in Chicago Heights.
The SafeLIGHT Foundation is a nonprofit organization committed to promoting safe driving behavior through charitable giving to traffic safety programs and people and organizations that support responsible driving.