Imagine having the freedom to go wherever you want, at whatever time and with whomever you want to travel with. It sounds nice, right? Jacob had this exact thought when he first entertained the idea of getting a driver’s licence. He recently got his P plates realising his long-term goal of obtaining a driver’s licence.
Jacob is a 20-year-old OnTrack Tasmania participant who has been with the company since the very beginning. He is supported to access the community to participate in activities of interest. Jacob likes rap music, cars, gaming, motorbikes, BMX bikes, action movies, fishing, playing pool at RSL and football. He attends the Making Tracks music sessions to rap and the Young Guns lunch.
Quade is an OnTrack Tasmania staff member who worked with Jacob for over two years. He describes Jacob as a shy individual who can take his time to warm up to someone but once he becomes comfortable, he is jovial, funny and likes to poke fun at his friends and himself. Quade inspired Jacob to get a driver’s licence to enable him to have more control over his life. Jacob was up to it and put in over 50 hours to realise the goal.
As soon as Jacob passed his online test, he booked a driving test with RACT. However, on the day of his test, he was not allowed to take the test due to not having the declaration signed by all his instructors. This upset Jacob and crushed his motivation and during this time his license expired. Quade encouraged Jacob and worked with him across three shifts to help him with the theory test and although Jacob got distracted many times and attempted to give up and play PlayStation, he eventually sat the test and passed.
Jacob passed his driving test in the first instance. He was elated and couldn’t keep a smile off his face. “Jacob attempted to tell me he failed but a smile quickly broke through and his cover was blown,” Quade said. His driving assessor was impressed and congratulated Jacob and he was straight on the phone to his mother with the exciting news. When asked what contributed to the success Jacob said, ”Quade, an interest to drive cars and wanting to be a safe driver.” Quade was happy to see Jacob’s hard work finally pay off. “I was wrapped for Jacob and could tell how much it meant to him, although I never doubted him as his driving ability is very impressive,” he said.
Jacob celebrated the milestone with two beers at his house. He has purchased a car and is in the process of getting it registered. He cannot wait to drive himself to Devonport to kick another goal off his list. Jacob also wants to be supported to get a job. His message to people with disabilities with a similar goal is to keep trying and never give up.
Jacob is grateful to OnTrack Tasmania for supporting him to achieve his goals. He has become a better pool player and is ready to start looking for a job.