Young people from diverse and complex backgrounds will have a greater opportunity to learn vital driving skills under a program launched on Wednesday.
The Rotary Club of Raymond Terrace officially launched their Raymond Terrace Driver Training Program at Kloster Raymond Terrace.
Organised in partnership with Kloster Ford, NSW Police – Port Stephens LAC and Port Stephens Council, the program focuses on empowering young people, who have encountered challenges and struggles in their early years, the opportunity to learn the skills and experience to be safe drivers.
John Chambers of the Rotary Club of Raymond Terrace said the program will help disadvantaged young people develop the confidence to be safe and responsible participants on Hunter roads.
“In our community, there are young people who have never been behind the wheel, let alone taught how to start the ignition, turn the head lights on or reverse the car. This program is designed to change that” Mr Chambers said.
“Barriers can exist in people’s lives that prevent them from being given the opportunity to go for their drivers licence or have driving lessons. Because of this, many people often go through life without the key safe driving skills”.
The program will involve a group of mentors working with participants to give them the confidence and skills to be safe drivers in the community.
“There are 17 local police officers who have put their hands up and offered to mentor the young people involved in the program. This is a perfect example of our community coming together to make a difference in the lives of young people” Mr Chambers said.
The mentors will work with participants to challenge them to make safe and responsible decisions behind the wheel, while helping them achieve important milestones such as securing their L-Plates and P-Plates.
“By working with disadvantaged youth, we are in a perfect position to help them achieve independence on our roads”.
“It’s such a reward being able to help people become safe and confident drivers and see the freedom that offers them” Mr Chambers said.
The program has secured a donated vehicle through Kloster Ford that will give the participants hands-on driving experience.
“We are so grateful for the support Kloster has provided. Without their kindness, we wouldn’t have been able to get this program off the ground”.