Community News

Life saving RYDA program comes to town as NSW youth road toll soars

Recently released figures show a shocking 44% increase in youth road deaths across NSW, leaving behind the devastated families and communities of the 79 young people killed on our roads last year. Road safety authorities have implemented a range of initiatives including increased restrictions and minimum log book hours which has seen a significant reduction in the youth road toll over the last decade. However, with the recent spike in youth road deaths, communities are realising that more needs to be done. Continuing their partnership with industry leader, Road Safety Education Limited (RSE), Rotary Clubs in the Yamba area are once again bringing to town, the award winning youth road safety program RYDA. More than 250 students from five local high schools will be participating in the program on 25th and 26th August. Held at the Yamba Sports Centre, RYDA has been embedded in the Yamba community for nine years. In this time over 1,800 students have had the opportunity to receive the life saving messages of the RYDA program. In 2017, the Yamba program will be delighted to welcome their 2,000th student through it’s doors. RSE, a national not for profit organisation, is the provider of the RYDA program which runs at around 90 venues across Australia and New Zealand, and has seen over half a million students attend the program to date. “RYDA is a series of practical and powerful workshops for high school students that challenge students to change the way they think about road safety and lay the foundation for safe road use throughout their lives”, said Greg Rappo, RSE Program Director. “RYDA focuses on cognition development, building and increasing social competency and resilience and motivating low-risk behavior. Our facilitators work with students to develop and practice personalised strategies which will help them respond positively to challenges on the road, both as drivers and highly influential passengers.” Mr Rappo continued, “This education doesn’t come from driving lessons, or the school classroom”. RYDA is made possible through the strong support of corporate partners, BOC, Toyota Australia, Bosch and Bridgestone, as well as community partner, Rotary. RYDA also receives greatly valued funding from the NSW Government. Local Rotarian, Glenn Brown says, “One of the great things about RYDA is that you don’t have to live in a capital city to access it. The support of local Rotary Clubs means that this award winning program can be run in all communities, by local road safety and education professionals, including the police”. “Young people continue to be over represented in road crash statistics. In fact, one young person dies on Australian roads almost every day. And for every life lost, another 20 are forever changed due to serious injuries. The most dangerous time for any young road user is in the first six to 12 months of being a solo driver.” he said. Media opportunities are available, with the first being, 25th August when over 140 students from Maclean High School will take part in this life saving program. Further information can be found


Road Safety Education Limited, a national not for profit organisation is committed to reducing trauma on our roads by educating young people in senior high school, through its flagship program RYDA