BURGEE SURPRISE FOR CADETS AND VOLUNTEERS
Last night, 2nd September 2015. Sittingbourne & Milton Sea Cadets hosted their Bi-Annual Royal Naval Parade Evening (RNP).
Despite the threat of precipitation, the event went very well and the Cadets and Staff acquitted themselves extremely well indeed. So well in fact that despite the unit long term plan was to achieve Burgee status by 2016. We actually achieved it one year early.
The Area Officer Commander John Greene RN confirmed at the end of the evening when he addressed the whole unit that we had just made it over the threshold of qualifying status and achieved an efficiency award for 2014/15 at Burgee standard.
This is a remarkable achievement and the result of many peoples efforts.
Current Officer in Charge John Yaxley wished to pay tribute to the work his predecessor Lee Maybourne had put in which meant he could take the role further and put into place further improvements. Which have contributed to this remarkable turn around in the units fortunes.
Many others have made a significant contribution to the success and continued growth of the unit. Not least the Vice Chairman, Mr Peter Luxton, 1st Lt, PO Laura Friday, Admin Officer, PO Dave Friday all the other Adult Volunteers, Instructional and UMC have played their part in this achievement and I would like to place on record my sincere thanks and pride in their achievement.
I would also like to congratulate and thank the cadets who have also made this possible through their hard work and enthusiasm in their training and duties. Also their parents and carers who, without their encouragement and support; ensuring regular attendance and acting as Mum or Dads Taxi when required.
I was particularly impressed by the number of Parents and Carers who volunteered to help with the catering and would like to thank them all for their hard work and patience. Their input made a good evening run so smoothly that I am sure it contributed to the scoring by the Area Officer which took us just over the Burgee qualifying mark.
All in all it was a great evening; with the Mayor of Swale Councillor Anita Walker showing support for her local Sea Cadet Unit, The Royal British Legion and Royal Naval Association plus many others also attended. Celebrating the success of the young people.
As an added bonus on the evening one of the unit trustees, Geoff Harris arrived a little late as he had been at the AGM of the Kent Branch of the London Grand Rank Association with news that they had made a donation to the unit of £250. Underlining the value with which the local and wider community value the work that the Sea Cadets do and the life changing experiences they provide.
Awards are great to achieve. But putting them into perspective, they are only a marker which, tells people that we are doing what it says on the can. Providing a wide range of training and adventurous activity for young people in a safe and stimulating environment. Embedding in them as they grow and develop, life skills such as Team Work, Self Confidence, Respect for others and themselves and a sense of community which will see them become the 'Good Citizens of Tomorrow'.
Plans for the coming year are always moving and modifying however the goals we aim for are always consistent.
We need to ensure the units sustainability at a consistently Burgee Standard.
Increase the numbers of Cadets and instructors so we are operating as near to capacity as possible. Which will allow us to offer even more to the cadets and further enhance our position in the community.
Recruit and develop the Unit Trustee Committee. With a much greater focus on leadership drawn from the local community. So the unit can maximise opportunities for support and engagement.
Develop the engagement with parents and carers and set up a parents and supporters association. Which will help with fundraising and supporting the training activities by running the nutty bar, transporting cadets and maintenance of equipment and the unit infrastructure.
So all in all a great evening following a fantastic year for Sittingbourne Sea Cadets. Which is down to a team effort from Cadets to Adult Volunteers, Parents and the Community as a whole.
BZ to you all and thank you for your magnificent effort and support.
Onwards and upwards
The Sea Cadets
Sittingbourne & Milton Unit