Trucker Buddy International is a non-profit organization that was started in 1992. The program is dedicated to help educate and mentor school children through pen pal relationships with professional truck drivers.
Trucker Buddy pairs classes of students, grades K-8, with professional truck drivers who serve as ambassadors of the trucking industry. Each week the truck drivers share their adventures on the road with their class through blogs, postcards, and letters, enhancing school subjects such as writing, history, and math.
American trucker buddies reach France
Through the Trucker Buddy website, a French teacher asked to be connected with an American truck driver; this was the organizations first time to truly go international. Bob and Linda Caffee, owner operators from Missouri, were partnered with a class of 10-12 year olds in St. Malo, France.
The French children love receiving postcards and emails from Team Caffee. The postcards allow the students to write reports on the different geographical areas of the United States in English.The partnership also helps the school children with their mathematics by converting the Caffee’s reported mileage on trips.
Out of the classroom and into the truck
Former middle school science teacher, Sonya Terrell, now trucks for Old Dominion Freight Lines. Her father drove trucks for a living, and she always loved hitting the road alongside him while growing up. After being laid off from teaching, Sonya decided to give trucking a try for herself. Now she partners with a fourth grade classroom through Trucker Buddy, continuing to teach children via the interstate.
Sonya runs a website for her classroom buddies to interact through blogging. Her regular posts includes maps of her routes, pictures of her travels, and personal accounts of her works. The students comment with their questions, and Sonja is quick to respond.
Connecting the older students
Trucker Buddy also offers a program called Trucking Mentor that partners professional truck drivers with driver education instructors at high schools across America. These mentorships help student drivers learn how to maneuver on roads alongside big rigs.
Trucking Mentors bring their trucks to schools and show youthful drivers how to prevent accidents by avoiding common driving mistakes. When students meet the professional drivers behind the wheel of a truck, respect develops for truck drivers and the trucking industry. Students begin to understand that truck drivers are real people with families, friends, and hobbies.
Drivers, if you are interested in becoming a Trucker Buddy or a Trucking Mentor visit the Trucker Buddy International website for more information.