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Driver Mentor Programme Reaches the South Island

Driver Mentor Programme Reaches the South Island

New Zealand, 23 July 2014 – A community programme to help disadvantaged young people learn to drive has launched in Christchurch as it aims to reach vulnerable drivers around the country.

Christchurch is the first place in the South Island to start the Community Driver Mentor Programme (CDMP), which helps young learner drivers who would not otherwise have access to a car or a qualified supervisor to help them practice. The CDMP is also running in Porirua, Waitomo and Gisborne, and programmes are planned for Northland and South Auckland in the near future.

Programme participants get partnered with experienced mentor drivers who take them out for 30 hours of supervised practice to help them work towards gaining a restricted licence.

Caltex has partnered with the NZ Transport Agency and Automobile Association to create the CDMP, which aims to give participants the experience and skills they need to stay safe on the road. With car crashes are the single greatest killer of New Zealand’s 16-24 year olds and leading cause of permanent injury, the programme aims to turn those statistics around.

Dean Gilbert, Chevron NZ General Manager, says, “This is a true community partnership and it addresses Caltex’s top priority of safety on our roads. As a community, we need to do everything we can to protect young New Zealanders when driving, and we know that more experience makes learner drivers safer.”

Caltex is contributing $100,000 to the two-year programme and is providing all the fuel for the lessons. The company is also encouraging its staff and franchise holders to train as mentors.

The CDMP gets mentors, who in Christchurch are from the Salvation Army, to supervise a range of driving experiences. Mentors will seek to foster positive driving habits, such as overcoming risky impulses and attitudes, which will benefit young drivers throughout their lives.

“We’re excited about the potential of this programme to make a real difference – first and foremost creating safer driving behaviours – but also providing young people with the opportunities and freedom that come with being a fully-licensed driver, including job prospects and not relying on public transport. We hope all mentors and learner drivers enjoy the journey throughout this programme and beyond,” adds Gilbert.

About Chevron
Chevron markets the Caltex brand in New Zealand, with more than 250 service stations and truck stops throughout the country. Chevron New Zealand is a wholly owned subsidiary of Chevron Corporation. Chevron is one of the world’s leading integrated energy companies, with subsidiaries that conduct business worldwide. The company is involved in virtually every facet of the energy industry. Chevron explores for, produces and transports crude oil and natural gas; refines, markets and distributes transportation fuels and lubricants; manufactures and sells petrochemical products; generates power and produces geothermal energy; provides energy efficiency solutions; and develops the energy resources of the future, including biofuels. Chevron is based in San Ramon, Calif. More information about Chevron is available at www.chevron.com.

ENDS

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