Brigadier Matthew Lowe, Deputy Commander Cadets, explains why the ACF is joining the national #iwill campaign and how cadets can get involved.
Social Action In The Army Cadets
The #iwill campaign was launched by Step up to Serve with the goal of making social action part of life for as many 10 to 20 year-olds as possible by the year 2020.
The ACF pledge is: We will embed social action as a habit for life in our cadets and volunteers through promoting the ACF value of selfless commitment.
Step up to Serve defines social action as ‘practical actions in the service of others’ so joining the campaign is a natural step for the ACF. Selfless commitment is one of the Army’s values, proudly shared by our cadets and adult volunteers who are already actively involved in social action by supporting charities, helping out in their local neighbourhoods and performing ceremonial duties to help represent the Armed Forces within their communities.
By joining the #iwill campaign we hope to make our cadets more aware of all the opportunities they have to take part in social action through the Army Cadets and encourage them to do even more.
So how can the ACF’s 41,000 cadets get more involved in the campaign?
- Cadets and young adults already have a range of opportunities for social action through their APC training, DofE and CVQO awards – but we will look for ways to encourage more young people to take up and complete our low-cost DofE programme and to work towards CVQO awards.
- We are working hard to recruit more adult instructors so we can deliver more opportunities for cadets to join the ACF.
- We are revamping the Army Cadets “Cadet and the Community” programme, which encourages cadets to take part in, shape or lead community projects – more information on this will be available soon.
- We are introducing an annual Community Week to raise the profile of the work we do in the community, to celebrate our achievements, and to give adults and cadets great ideas for new community projects. (For examples of the great work our cadets are already doing visit the Community Week webpage.)
- We are encouraging our cadets to make personal #iwill pledges using our social media channels. You can use our resource to create your own pledge board.
Whilst #iwill is about youth social action we should not forget the work of our 9,000 volunteer instructors – an amazing group of people who have built social action into their lives and are great role models for our cadets.
Helped by our volunteers we anticipate that between now and 2020 many thousands of young people from around the UK will have joined the Army Cadets, learnt about our values and become better, more socially aware citizens.
Story image: Cadets from 43 Detachment in East Ham London were the first to make their #iwill pledges