A morning tea for the volunteers of Armidale’s L2P Learner Driver Mentor Program held on Wednesday morning at Jobs Australia was also attended by mayor Simon Murray and special projects officer David Snell and Patrick Crick from UNE.
Jobs Australia’s Kyrie-anne Saxby said it was a good opportunity to provide the volunteers with a little recognition, as well as bring them all together.
Armidale L2P supports new drivers aged between 16 and 24 by providing access to a motor vehicle and using mentors to help learners gain the skills and hours needed to successfully gain their provisional license.
Kyrie said during the last 15 months the program and the mentors helped 18 learner drivers get their P-plates, and there are about 20 more students waiting to join.
“We wanted to do the morning tea to say “thank you” to our mentors, because they all dedicate at least one lesson a week from their own time. They don’t have to donate their time but they do.” Kyrie said.
The program was supported by both council and the UNE as a pilot scheme up until May and both organisations had committed to maintaining their support for the program.
“Yesterday David said the university would keep doing the free services and safety checks on the vehicle for us,” Kyrie said.
“We’re looking at purchasing a new vehicle to extend the service out to Inverell and Moree, and he said if we do that then they’re happy to maintain the servicing and everything for that vehicle as well.”
Kyrie said L2P was seeking community support for new mentor volunteers who would need to hold a full NSW drivers license, a good driving record, undergo police, license, and working with children checks as well as a willingness to work with a wide range of people from community and cultural groups.
“The program pays for a driving course for the mentors that runs for two-days,” Kyrie said.
“Every person in the program who completes it and gets their license is just so thankful to the mentors and the things they do.”