RYDA aims to influence the attitudes, awareness and behaviours of young drivers and passengers and equip them with the knowledge they need to stay safe on our roads.

RYDA (Rotary Youth Driver Awareness in its original form but now an acronym used as a word) is a one-day road safety education program for the youth of our community. RYDA is all about road safety and is directed to young people at the period in their life when they start driving a car and ride as a passenger in a car driven by one of their peers.

The RYDA program is delivered to senior secondary school students in years 10 & 11 and is generally facilitated through Rotary Clubs. RYDA events are sometimes held at schools, but more often are held at readily accessible dedicated non-school venues so that the program can be accommodated in a normal school day, but away from the limitations and distractions of school.

At RYDA, students attend six interactive sessions over the course of the day delivered by road safety experts, including driver instructors, police, recovering survivors of car crashes, drug and alcohol educators and motoring service personnel. In small peer groups, students are challenged to change the way they think about road safety, participating in a stopping distance demonstration, devising personalised strategies, gaining an understanding of their individual risk profile, leading an investigation into a real life crash and getting tips from road safety experts on how to protect themselves, their friends and their family.

RYDA gives students critical information and strategies that do not come from driving lessons, books or the school classroom, to help ensure that when they commence driving they have the best road safety education possible.

By participating in RYDA, schools can further their commitment to educating the ‘whole student’, providing a unique opportunity to learn essential life skills as they face the challenges of driving solo or as an influential passenger of a novice driver.

 

Initiated by Rotary, the program is generally organised, coordinated and delivered by volunteers from groups of Rotary clubs in partnership with the program provider, Road Safety Education Limited (RSE). RSE develop and provide program resources, program evaluation, promotional material and accredited facilitators and also deliver the program at many venues. RSE is also the agency charged with responsibility for dispensing State Government Road Safety Education Program funding to participating Rotary groups.

Programs are held throughout the year to accommodate local school and venue availability.

Rotary District 9620 has a number of club groups and individual clubs conducting RYDA road safety education programs. Rotary is experienced in engaging schools as part of delivering a number of youth programs and has clubs in metropolitan, regional and rural areas participating in the RYDA program. Rotary has adopted a successful model and as a consequence is regularly successful in obtaining financial and in-kind donations and other funding for delivery of the program. Rotary clubs consistently engage directly with schools, suitable venues, bus companies, local businesses and community organisations and resolve emergent issues to ensure the program is sustainable in their community.

District 9620 clubs are encouraged to promote Rotary and the RYDA program in their communities through local media and to take part in this most valuable program.

Now is the time to equip young people with the tools and knowledge they need to stay safe on the road.

Contact District RYDA Chair Bryan Payne for further details and contact information for a Rotary RYDA facilitation group near you.