"Yes, that is right, you can help out as well!"
We have a great team of adult volunteers who make up the staff and civilian committee of 1244 Squadron, without whom there would be no squadron and our cadets would not be able to take part in all the amazing opportunities offered by the RAF Air Cadets. Our squadron staff consists of uniformed and non-uniformed volunteers with a diverse range of skills, age and experience that is of great benefit to the cadets, whilst our civilian committee is made up of parents/guardians of cadets who do an excellent job of keeping the wheels turning in the background and ensuring the squadron fulfills its obligations to cadets.
We are always looking for new volunteers with a passion for encouraging success and providing the best experience we possibly can to our cadets. Your contribution could range from being a member of the civilian committee and having a say in things like finances or helping the squadron provide for the community, to instructing and training cadets in one or more specialised subjects/areas, or assisting with running the squadron on a day-to-day basis.
Uniformed, non-uniformed and civilian committee roles are available depending on how much time you are willing to give, and the main prerequisite is that you are at least 20yrs of age and consent to a DBS check.
The civilian committee are responsible for the financial and long-term direction of the squadron. They ensure the squadron is being run effectively and that cadets are being offered as many opportunities as possible and no-one is missing out.
The time commitment of being on the committee is very low, usually only a couple of hours a month so it is ideal for parents/guardians that are willing to help but don't want to get too involved. Members of the civilian committee don't normally get involved with training and working with the cadets directly, however they do often provide additional support for the squadron by way of helping with transport for events and training/presentations in any relevant specialist areas.
For more information on the role of the civilian committee and ways to join, head over to our civilian committee page.
Unlike the civilian committee, squadron staff work directly with cadets and carry out most of the day-to-day tasks required to provide all the training and activities to cadets.
Civilian Instructor roles are the usual starting point for new squadron staff. It may then be possible, should you choose, to progress into uniform as a junior commissioned or senior non-commissioned officer, which involves an interview/selection process followed by a training course. There are also other roles available such as chaplains.
The main thing you'll need is enthusiasm and a willingness to help out with a variety of tasks, but if you have additional skills then all the better! Here is a list of the types/areas of skills that would be helpful - but do not feel this list limits what you can offer:
- Sports - field games, athletics, swimming etc
- Adventure training - walking both lowland and on mountains, navigation skills, climbing, sailing, canoeing etc
- Aviation interests - a passion and interest in aviation or related subjects
- Leadership - personal development, teamwork and self-confidence building
- Aero-modelling - static models, RC flying etc
- Other - organisational skills, previous military or cadet experience
The squadron meets multiple times a week and there are often activities at weekends and during school holidays. You decide how much of your time you can offer, there is no 'minimum hours' requirement for civilian instructors and you do not have to be at the squadron every parade night - though turning up regularly will help share the load with other staff. This is slightly different to uniformed staff, who are expected to attend the squadron on a regular basis (at least once a week), and there is generally more expectation for them to support events like training courses and camps, as well as take on 'extra curricular' things like minibus driving and assisting other local squadrons where needed.
The road to joining us as a member of squadron staff starts with a discussion with the OC. If you would like to know more about what is involved, or to start the ball rolling then please get in touch.
Once you get established then opportunities will arise for your own development including training courses, expeditions, trips, camps, flying, gliding and shooting. The cadet's safety and development comes first, but there is no reason why you cannot have some fun and gain new skills too!