YOU couldn’t wipe the smile off his face.
On Wednesday, March 15 Taree High School year nine student James Dumas saw the bus he designed for Manning Valley and Area Community Transport for the first time.
The bus was unveiled to a roaring applause at an all-school assembly.
To thank him for his impressive work, James was presented with a laptop by Manning Valley and Area Community Transport’s Aboriginal transport development officer Stephen Oxley and bus driver Warren Syron.
Stephen said the bus will be used for social, disability and aged care access for anything from medical visits to shopping.
“The bus will now be easily identifiable and will create awareness of community transport available with Transport NSW,” Stephen said.
“It looks great and it is priceless seeing the look on James’ face.”
School students across the region were offered the opportunity to submit their designs.
James was encouraged to enter the competition by Taree High School’s Connected Communities senior leader community engagement Jay Davis.
During the assembly, Jay said: “This is a community-based product and it shows when you are offered an opportunity this can be the outcome”.
“James is an excellent role model and a great student,” he added.
James’ design incorporates fish, traditional dot painting and the Biripi totem of the shark.
“It looks even better than I thought it would,” James said.
James thanked Community Transport, Jay Davis and his mum, Brooke Browne.
“Without her, I wouldn’t be a good person,” he said.
Brooke had secretly seen photos of the bus before it’s official unveiling.
“He’s always loved drawing and he made lots of drafts in his sketchbook,” she said.
“It makes me feel very proud to see it in person.
“He’ll be looking out and pointing it out to everyone.”