ICBC funding new bursary to help youth in care learn to drive
March 30, 2017
ICBC is announcing $50,000 in funding to assist youth in foster care and those who have aged out learn how to drive.
ICBC is working with the provincial government to partner with the Federation of B.C. Youth in Care Networks (FBCYICN) to create a bursary program, Take the Wheel, which will fund driver training and support for at least 50 qualifying youth and young adults from across B.C. over the coming year.
Having a driver's licence can open the door to employment and educational opportunities. Access to driver training is often limited for youth in government care and by providing young people with financial support, this program will help youth achieve the major milestone of learning to drive.
The bursary program will be administered by FBCYICN. There are two bursaries: up to $1,000 toward the cost of an ICBC-approved graduated licensing program course and $250 to help to cover costs associated with completing the necessary driving practice hours, and incidentals such as proper identification, gas, insurance and other vehicle-related costs.
In support of this new program, Dueck GM has generously donated a new Chevrolet Cruze so that bursary participants have access to a vehicle for further practice and road tests.
"As often said – it takes a village to raise a child," said Stephanie Cadieux, Minister of Children and Family Development. "Today's partnerships embody our collective support for youth who are about to age out of care or who have aged out of care by helping put them on the road to success. We know from working closely with our youth advisory council that having a driver's licence is a key milestone, giving them the freedom to get to and from work and school and follow their life goals."
"ICBC is committed to helping youth stay safe on the road," said Mark Blucher, ICBC's president and CEO. "The new bursary program will eliminate some barriers that prevent B.C. youth from gaining the experience they need to become safe and confident drivers. This is part of our commitment to give back and support programs in the communities we serve throughout B.C."
"Not only is learning to drive an important rite of passage in our society, it also has profound social, cultural and economic impacts for youth in and from care," said Jules Wilson, FBCYICN executive director. "We are thrilled to have this opportunity to support young people on their journey towards the freedom and independence that having your driver's licence can provide."
The bursaries are funded by ICBC's contribution and administered by FBCYICN with the support of the Ministry of Children and Family Development. Information about the program, including qualifying criteria and the application process are available at fbcyicn.ca.
Sam Corea (ICBC)
Rebecca Larder (FBCYICN)
604-527-7762 ext. 112