Kaitiaki o Ara / SADD (Students Against Dangerous Driving)

SADD exists to empower young Kiwis to prevent loss on our roads. Established in 1985, in response to unacceptable levels of fatalities and serious injuries to rangatahi, students came together to deliver positive change. The NZAA helped to make SADD become a truly national initiative and has been a major supporter ever since. SADD is a registered charity and NZAA has representation on the SADD Charitable Trust Board.

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These days, AA Driving School and AA’s Policy and Advocacy team work closely with SADD to achieve the common goals of educating young drivers about road safety and preventing loss on our roads. SADD not only enables young Kiwis to have a voice but provides a platform to amplify road safety messages. SADD is the only student-led road safety education organisation in Australasia. The programme is closely aligned to road safety goals. Early in 2023, SADD refreshed its brand and introduced 4 Programme Aspirations; Safe vehicles, Safe road-user, Sharing our roads and Driver licence journey - all of which reinforce safer choices and decision making on our roads. 

SADD strategic priorities and goals are:

  • Empower and lead: By student-led action, develop young organisational leaders who empower their peers to become local leaders, innovators and change-makers in their schools and communities.
  • Align and collaborate: By collective action, work together for greater impact, develop and run positive activities that contribute to the national road safety strategy.
  • Educate, activate and communicate: By effective messaging,  design and deliver promising practice road safety education initiatives and effective communications to influence effect road user choices.
  • Enhance: Enhance wellbeing / Hauora by being safe, developing skills to make transition from school to adult life, demonstrating how and why to stay on the right path.
  • Endure: Resilient and enduring by adapting to change, meeting challenge and contributing to building a life-long road safety culture.

Students focus on real issues affecting young road users and use problem-solving techniques to design engaging activities. These activities influence their peers to reduce death and serious injuries, whilst enhancing wellbeing outcomes.

Whilst SADD is better known for its grassroots student participation, it also has a programme of development for aspiring young leaders. Each year, a cohort of young people apply to be a National Leader. It is this role that enables young Kiwis to lead change to promote a safer NZ. The AA is proud to be a part of this. You can read more about these young leaders as well as other SADD leader streams.

SADD collaborates with community partners nationwide to ensure effective, sustainable action - including alongside NZAA District Councils. This collaboration occurs across the year as well as across community partners with a shared objective. Student activity doesn’t stop when they leave school. Many go on to finish what they had started or to commit to a further two years with SADD such as being a Youth Representative on the Board of Trustees.

To find out more about SADD and how you can get involved to help make a difference go to the SADD website www.sadd.org.nz and follow them on social media @saddnz.

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