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Young people in the regions receive support to gain their driver’s licence

Published: February 28, 2023 2:14pm

Geraldton and Kalgoorlie PCYC can help more young people get safely on the road thanks to $517k funding from the McGowan State Government.

The centres received $247k and $270k respectively to fund the PCYC ‘Drive to the Future’ Program. This will allow PCYC to support 60 young people in Geraldton, Kalgoorlie, Laverton, Leonora, and Menzies to get their driver’s licence over the next year.

Transport Minister Rita Saffioti announced the expansion of the McGowan Government’s Driving Access and Equity Program to the Mid-West, Gascoyne and Goldfields-Esperance regions after the success of the program in the Kimberley and Pilbara. Broome PCYC is a current recipient of this funding and helped nine young people obtain their Learner’s Permit and four receive their Provisional Licences in the last six months.

David is one of those lucky people in Broome.

It was a major turning point in the 23-year-old’s life when he walked out of Broome’s licensing centre with his driver’s licence the second time round.

“I never thought I would be able to get my license. Especially not a manual,” he commented.

David’s main reason for getting his licence was to support his family and become more independent, not having to rely on anyone else for lifts.

Bronte Berenger, Drive to the Future Coordinator at Broome PCYC, explained how important it was to build David’s confidence. Even though David was unsuccessful on his first attempt, he demonstrated incredible resilience and belief in himself by brushing it off and persevering to take another test.

“I’m so happy I didn’t give up on myself and kept trying,” declared David.

Saffioti stated, “We know this program has the potential to change lives and we’re seeing this happen in the Kimberley and Pilbara where the program rolled out last year, resulting in hundreds of people being supported through the licensing process.”

Member for Geraldton, Lara Dalton MLA, stated, “This program will provide disadvantaged members of our community access to a licence and with it, help them hold down jobs, receive education and training, access health services and be better connected with their community.”

As Member for Kalgoorlie, Ali Kent MLA, commented, “Having access to a driver’s licence is something many of us take for granted, but it’s not a simple process for everyone.”