Drive One, Give One: Changing Lives One Licence at a Time

Do you want to be part of an initiative that’s changing lives and improving family well-being one driver licence at a time?

Here’s how you can use your skills to make a difference.

The Puketāpapa Community Driving School (PCDS) team supports women from resettled communities by making driver training more affordable and accessible. You can contribute your time and skills by becoming a driving instructor if you have had a clean NZ full Licence for more than 2 years.

Email or text/call 022 473 0284 for more information.

Established 16 years ago, Migrant Action Trust (MAT) is a charitable trust working to support migrants and former refugees in their settlement process in Aotearoa New Zealand. Besides running employment programmes to support migrant jobseekers, MAT runs PCDS which aims to reduce the barriers often faced by those in the resettled community when working towards a driver licence.

No longer a normal rite of passage, gaining a driver licence is a privilege for those who have the resources and support to learn, practise and then navigate their way through the licence system. By booking lessons through PCDS, not only can someone access expert advice, they will also support young people, new migrants, ethnic women and resettled communities to gain their driver’s licence. 100% of PCDS profits are used to subsidise learner driver training and licensing for those in need.

After helping 48 young people, migrants and former refugees to get their driver licence in 2018, PCDS assisted 32 more community members – including 8 young people and 8 former refugees to pass their practical driving tests in the last 6 months (January – June 2019). Here are some of their stories.

Zubeda Ali is a mother of four who has gained newfound independence after successfully passing her restricted driving test in April 2019. She can now drop and collect her kids to and from school and easily transport them wherever needed, without needing their father to be available.

Thdah Wah is a Burmese refugee who came to Aotearoa New Zealand four years ago with her husband and three children. She had her learner licence within one year of arriving but only started learning to drive three months ago. Transporting her children to and from school was the main reason she decided to work towards attaining her driver licence. She is also aware that having a licence offers a distinct advantage when pursuing job opportunities. Thdah aims to sit her restricted licence test in August 2019.

Slas is a young widow from Ethiopia who has three young children. She hopes to get her driver’s licence so she can transport her children to and from school, attend English classes, go grocery shopping and visit friends. Slas is very keen to find a job once her English has improved. Working towards and attaining a driver’s licence will solve many of the problems she faces in her day-to-day life.

Research shows that having a driver’s licence means a young person is three times more likely to secure a job. For many former refugees, especially mothers with small children, learning to drive is an essential life skill which greatly assists their ability to successfully settle in Aotearoa New Zealand. More than 80% of learner drivers on the PCDS waitlist are women from resettled communities who prefer a female instructor/mentor.

To join PCDS team of mentors to support more women from resettled communities, sign up for our free quarterly training via or text/call 022 473 0284.