Throughout the year the Prince Albert Cadets learn a variety of skills.
© Herald photo by Jodi Schellenberg
Some of the Prince Albert Cadets show off their skills with rifles during the annual inspection ceremony on Saturday at the Armouries.
On Saturday, the cadets had the chance to show off their skills to family and friends during their annual inspection ceremony at the Armouries.
“It is where the Cadets get their awards for if they excelled during the year and show off what they have learned,” explained Frank MacGregor, Saskatchewan division representative with P.A. Branch of the Cadets.
“It is excellent (program) and gives them a sense of ownership and pride,” MacGregor said. “I looked around today and I saw quite a few former Cadets that were in when I started with the organization.”
Many cadets will go on to do great things, whether in the military or as civilians.
“I was out in Victoria three years ago and I walked around,” MacGregor said. “There were a bunch of ships there and I think I knew five of the captains of the ships from being in Cadets.
“You can see how they have used the Cadet program to put themselves up the ladder,” he added. “It has been really a great program and it keeps the kids out of trouble.”
The program teaches them many skills, including leadership and discipline, as well as other skills such as listening, how to tie ropes and knots, how to march and many others.
The Prince Albert branch is the only group that starts at age nine, MacGregor said. Most of the other groups start a year later and then when they turn 12 or 13, the cadets get to chose whether they would like to continue in army, air or sea cadets.
The program is open to both male and female cadets, MacGregor said, and they do not discriminate.
In the past, the Prince Albert chapter has faced some challenges.
“I fought to keep the Armouries here because if they closed it down it meant the Cadet corps couldn’t afford to rent places and the reserve would have been gone,” MacGregor said. “The city would have lost the use of the Armouries, but they backed away and decided to leave us with the Armouries. Now they are fixing it up, which is great because in the winter it could get pretty cold and expensive to heat.”
Without the Armouries, the cadets would have been out of a place to practise and learn new skills.
“It gives kids a chance and schools like it because they learn how to listen,” MacGregor said. “You’ll see that today … I think it is a blessing to the community that they are not running wild.”
He also mentioned the program wouldn’t be possible without the help of all the volunteers.
Although they generally have a sign up session in the fall, MacGregor said youth can join the corps any time of year by contacting one of the commanding officers.