Leaders of Tatamagouche’s 596 Phoenix Air Cadet squadron and Truro’s 185 Navy League cadet corps (NLCC) are working together to mark provincial Cadet Day on Oct. 5 in a special way. They are co-hosting a fundraising concert at the North Shore Recreation Centre (wheelchair accessible) in Tatamagouche.
“We are very excited about this,” said midshipman (NL) James Johnstone, commanding officer of the 185 NLCC. “There is a lot of comradery between all of the different cadet corps in the area and we saw this as a good chance to partner with someone who needs the help as much as we do.”
Navy League Cadets is offered at no charge and is open to children ages nine to 12, while air cadets, also offered at no charge, welcomes youth ages 12 to 19.
The children are given many opportunities to develop important life skills including teamwork, leadership and sportsmanship.
Both programs encourage physical fitness and emphasize the importance of volunteer service. The cadets can often be seen out in the community helping at local events, fundraisers and parades. Other activities that the cadets participate in include marksmanship, drill team, naval/air force knowledge classes, weekend outings, and for the Navy League Cadets, free music lessons.
“One of the best things about cadets is it’s all free,” said Johnstone. “There are lots of great programs out there, but having your kids involved can be costly. With cadets we welcome everyone. Basically, we ask kids to be respectful and have positive attitudes; in return they get uniforms and lots of opportunities for fun and learning.”
Meeting the financial needs of a growing corps can be challenging.
“We have been very lucky to have help from other local cadet corps and sponsorship from the Truro Lions Club,” said NLCC executive officer Tieren Hawkins, “but as the corps grows our budget needs to grow with it. That’s why we are fortunate to have a committed group of volunteers to help us fundraise, so that we can offer more opportunities to more children.”
The core program of the 596 Phoenix Squadron is provided through the Air Cadet League of Canada, the Department of National Defence and its sponsor, the Royal Canadian Legion Branch 64 Tatamagouche. However, the local group must also fundraise to support the program enabling their children to enjoy field trips, along with supporting other leadership and community service activities.
Both the 596 Phoenix Air Cadet Squadron and Truro’s 185 Navy League Cadet Corps saw Oct. 5 as an excellent opportunity to celebrate what the cadets have accomplished.
“It’s a natural fit,” said Elsie Schofield, commanding officer of 596 Phoenix Air Cadet Squadron. “Oct. 5 is Cadet Day in Nova Scotia so it’s an ideal time to bring together two hard working groups of cadets and their volunteers to show our community what they can do.”
The military themed concert will begin at 7p.m. There will be performances by myself, Bob and C.J. Prest, Gary Collins, Dale Fisher, Tanya Dondale, Josey Martell, Megan Joudrie and Brennan Beal. Both groups of cadets will give drill team demonstrations and there will be door prizes, 50/50 tickets and refreshments available.
Admission is by donation and everyone is welcome to attend.
For more information on Truro’s Navy League cadet program, call 956-8398 or email email@example.com. For more information on Tatamagouche’s air cadet program, call 902-485-8314 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Julie Johnstone is a married mother of two school-aged children, fiddle and step dance teacher and a community volunteer. She lives in North River. If you have any community news to report, send it to her at email@example.com.