** QUEENS BIRTHDAYS HONOURS 2020 AWARDED TO OUR COMMANDING OFFICER - LIEUTENANT (SCC) OLIVER CHAMBERS MBE RNR **
Congratulations are in order for the recognition of the outstanding achievements and contributions made by our Commanding Officer within the Sea Cadets and wider communities of Birmingham, Sandwell and beyond.
As Chair of Birmingham Vernon I am immensely proud that the recognition of a MBE (Member of the Order of the British Empire) has been duly awarded to our Commanding Officer by Her Majesty The Queen. It gives me great pleasure to know that the qualities, characteristics and commitments made by Oliver across a number of charitable causes over a long period of time has been honoured in this way.
Oliver’s journey with Sea Cadets started in the early 1990’s as a new cadet recruit with Birmingham Vernon Sea Cadets. He progress through the ranks to Cadet Corporal in the Royal Marines Cadets. After that he joined the team as an Adult Volunteer, a role held for over 18 years. During his time Oliver has held additional volunteering positions from unit level right up to National Level to further develop young people and adults alike. Such positions are National Rowing Coach, Assistant District Officer, Area Staff Officer Rowing and now Commanding Officer a role held for the last 4 years.
During his time as Commanding Officer, Oliver has continuously improved the standards of the cadet experience. Our results in the last assessment being the highest score that Birmingham Vernon has ever had. This is true testament to the strong leadership and commitment shown by him. The last 18 months has really highlighted the success that Oliver’s involvement has had within Birmingham Vernon, such as a Captains Commendation for recognition of the additional projects undertaken from Birmingham Vernon, the willingness to take part in a partnership to realise the Midlands Boat Station Project, the Cadet Expansion Programme with Wodensborough Ormiston Academies Trust, that is seeing the introduction of a brand new Royal Marines Cadets Detachment within the Sandwell Community and the start up of the new Junior Sea Cadets Programme within the Brasshouse Community Centre in Sandwell. Last year we also went on to win the Social Action Award for the South West Area in recognition of our community work across Birmingham and Sandwell.
Never to rest on his laurels, during the Covid19 Crisis Oliver become a Community Hero and also volunteered as one of our NHS Volunteers. This saw him delivering prescriptions to patients, making calls and delivering food parcels to vulnerable people in the community. Alongside this he also volunteered over 500 hours for North Smethwick Development Trust a charity based in Smethwick, Sandwell, where our Junior Sea Cadets programme is based. Here he cooked and delivered over 1500 meals to the homeless community, vulnerable families and individuals and helped with a number of maintenance jobs within the community centre. He also helped pack over 350 food parcels and delivered them to people’s homes and helped the development of a membership based Food Pantry Service at Brasshouse Community Centre in Smethwick.
Sir is a true example of the core values of our organisations and an excellent role model for our young people and certainly does give young people the best possible head start in life through nautical adventure and fun. He is equally a great mentor to not just our Adult Volunteer team, but the wider community at large.
Please join me in congratulating our incredible Commanding Officer Lt (SCC) Oliver Chambers MBE RNR
Jenn Harrison BEM
Chairperson Birmingham Vernon Sea Cadets