YHP AUSTRALIA – Driving Change
Three urban areas in New South Wales: Redfern, in Sydney; Shellharbour to the south of Sydney and Griffith, 500km inland to the west.
2013 - 2014
The local context
The Aboriginals and Torres Strait Islanders are indigenous communities often suffering from deprivation. Less than fifty percent of Aboriginal people in remote communities report having a valid driving licence, resulting in limited access to education, employment and health services. Every year Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people are approximately four times more likely to die in fatal road accidents than the national average.
To increase driver licensing and road safety among the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities. This will increase their access to employment, education and opportunity.
Work with each of the local communities to identify specific local road safety and driver licensing priorities, and work with relevant service providers to identify and address gaps in local service provision and delivery.
We developed Community Road Safety Champions - who were trained and supported by the programme. The Road Safety Champion was the ‘go to’ person to help young people to access the information and services they required in order to obtain a licence and other road safety assistance.
Local community leaders, community groups and organisations, as well as panels of young people, shaped their local programmes and provided important local advocacy and communications.
We created a Learner Driver Mentor programme to provide one-on-one support for young learner drivers and worked with driving instructors, job service agencies and other bodies to coordinate their support.
255 clients registered for assistance with licensing, 59 received licenses and 38 had their licenses reinstated or had restrictions lifted.
AstraZeneca staff raised $45,000 to pay for small cars on which to learn and for other support.
The programme was extended to nine further sites with the support of Transport New South Wales and NSW Health.
A further $120,000 was provided by Transport NSW to provide additional project coordination and support to the youth workers, and to provide communication materials to address volunteer recruitment and retention.
Glen was nearly nineteen, and relying on friends and family to get him to work and to other commitments. He was struggling to meet the required 120 hours of driving practice to complete his Learner’s Licence and turned to Molisa, the Driving Change Community Licensing Champion in Redfern, for help.
With the recent addition of a car for the program, thanks to AstraZeneca, Glen was soon accumulating the supervised driving hours, including a Safer Driving Course which counted 20 hours in his log book. Glen is now qualified and has become a role model and an asset to his family and community referring many other young Aboriginal people in the community to the Driving Change programme.