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Monday, 21 December 2009

Ministry of Defence destroying hundreds of youth groups

Thanks to Willie Rennie MP for finding this nugget via a Parliamentary Question.

The Ministry of Defence has once again been found out trying to slash budgets and spending on projects that it perhaps should actually be investing in.

The Army Cadet Force is one of the largest youth organisations in the country with more than 8,500 instructors and 45,000 members aged 12 to 18, with the MoD’s own research showing that between 15 and 20 per cent of youngsters who train with the cadets then go on to join the forces.

However, this is just one of the youth organisations connected to the Armed Forces, there is the Air Training Corps, the Sea Cadets Corps and the Combined Cadet Force.

As a former member of 209 Squadron of the Air Training Corps I know how important these organisations are.

We were taught discipline, manners and many life skills as well as all the obvious military skills such as flying, shooting (in a controlled environment), map reading and how to use a compass.

We also attended many RAF bases on summer camps and that is when I first flew solo, in Wales over St David's cathedral in a chipmunk plane.

I also flew in the SAS helicopters the day after they had been used in the storming of the Iranian embassy back in 1980.

The government are making a massive mistake trying to cut funding to these organisations, they claim they want to tackle youth crime and keep children off the streets, well here is a group of organisations which do just that and also teach the youngsters something useful for their lives ahead.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Do you know how much money is wasted by the Army Cadets and Officer Training Core - when money should be going on providing equipment, facilities and after care for those wounded in action - these organisations spend huge amounts on jollies, such as so called formal dinners, hiring hotels, equipment, etc all for groups of people, the majority of whom don't even go into the armed forces.

I'd rather see this money diverted into front line services. If people want to do more challenging activities then there are organisations such as Duke of Edinburgh and the Venture Scouts who run such schemes. Why on earth we should be promoting fighting, weaponry, and promoting the armed forces who need to clean up their equality act is beyond me.

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