‘I don’t know what to say’ were the words of one of Rise’s mental health clients when our outreach support worker Nat McWhinney informed her that she was being offered a free car to have.
The Rise client, who came to us through the Youthlink program and has been a part of the housing stimulus program since the beginning of 2015. She is currently focusing on study and traineeship options and was overwhelmed at the generosity of the Shurman family who were donating the car.
The car that was donated to Rise was a 1990 Toyota Corona. It had previously been owned by Mr Shurman’s mother. Mrs Shurman, who recently celebrated her 90th birthday, was no longer able to drive so the family thought it would be best to donate the car to a charity that could use it.
Our client had been using her trusty mountain bike as a mode of transport to make it to appointments and meetings in the city. A lot of Rise’s clients are on a disability pension and are unable to afford cars, therefore relying heavily on public transport. This in itself can be problematic, with some clients having social anxiety issues and relying on public transport can be too much for them, resulting in missed appointments and further isolation barriers.
Our client told Rise that she is very excited to have the opportunity to finish accumulating her learner driver hours and then will have reliable transport to start Technical and Further Education (TAFE) in the new year of the traineeship that she’s been shortlisted for. ‘So many job adverts require you to have a car, so now I can apply for more jobs and make sure if I go to TAFE, I can make all of my classes’.
Outreach support worker Nat said ‘having transport is such an important tool in our clients’ recovery journey. Our clients can feel very isolated sometimes when they move into our properties and their old social networks are no longer close by’.
Rise would like to extend our utmost gratitude to the Shurman family for their lovely donation of a car for one of our clients.