Most adult refugees arriving in Australia do not have any formal driving experience. For all of these new arrivals, passing the NSW RMS Learner Driver’s Test is an important milestone in the resettlement process.
Very importantly, holding a drivers licence enhances future work opportunities and increases mobility for their families to access a wider range of recreational and cultural activities.
The L2P Driving Program supports adult members of the Illawarra refugee community that have a Learner Driver Licence to obtain their Provisional Licence through supervised driving practice with a SCARF volunteer, who is a full licence holder.
Since 2009, SCARF’s innovative driving mentoring program has recruited driving mentors from the Wollongong community, getting them into the ‘left hand seat’ as a driving supervisor.
SCARF purchased a second-hand car for L2P and developed a computer-based booking system that has been implemented to manage car bookings. Learners pay a small fee for each driving session with a SCARF mentor, to help ensure the program is sustainable and self-sufficient. Over 60 learners received assistance which has helped them pass their practical driving test.
SCARF also runs workshops to help with extra knowlege around owning a car. Past workshops have included Buying Your First Car and Keeping Your Car on the Road.