Drive program looking for a new funding injection

A program that helps women who have experienced domestic violence gain their driver's licence has put out the call for new donations to keep operating, following a successful fundraiser in March.

Thrive Services in partnership with Sunday Motors and Blue Mountains Mazda held an event called "Cars and Canapes" on March 6, raising funds for the Drive program. Participants learned about the fundamentals of car care with a workshop run by Andrew Macarthur, learning how to change a tyre and tips around basic mechanics and care of a vehicle. The evening included raffles, live music provided by Nick Macken, canapes and a selection of mocktails and good company.

Andrew Macarthur (centre) at the Cars and Canapes fundraiser for the Drive program.

Andrew Macarthur (centre) at the Cars and Canapes fundraiser for the Drive program.

The program is a partnership with Blue Mountains Women’s Health and Resource Centre, with Great Community Transport providing volunteer drivers and vehicles to help women get practical driving hours to gain their provisional licence. Drive helps women aged over 25 who have experienced domestic violence or disadvantage to gain their Learner’s and then Provisional Driver’s Licence.

The program also provides practical skills such as regular basic car care workshops run by Andrew and Cameron Macarthur of Blue Mountains Mazda.

Previous grants from Westpac and individual donations have allowed Thrive and BMWHC to pay for driving package lessons from local instructors - however funding will run out by March 31.

“This is such a worthwhile and unique program," said Angelique Sasagi, Executive Officer of Thrive Services.

"Participants have reporting that by gaining their licence with Drive’s support they have had more opportunities for employment, education choices, affordable housing options or are able to drive their kids to sports games and activities.

"We’re very fortunate that Andrew and Cameron Macarthur were again generous with their time and resources with Cars and Canapes – including a generous donation on the night. However we are continuing to seek donations and support to keep Drive operating beyond March 31 and are asking the community to help."

A Friends trivia fundraising night supported by Springwood Sports Club was also held on March 15, with all proceeds going to the Drive program.

If you would like to find out more about the Drive Program or would like to donate call Thrive on 4782 1555 or info@thriveservices.org.au