Wandsworth Army Cadets receive Citizenship Award for Community Service

20 April 2016

Cadets and staff from 133 Wandsworth Army Cadet Force (Royal Military Police) Detachment have received the prestigious Greater London ACF Citizenship Award for Community Service.

The Award, presented by Her Majesty’s Lord-Lieutenant for Greater London Mr Ken Olisa OBE, recognises the detachment’s determined and positive community engagement activity against difficult odds.

To win the award, the cadets raised money for charity, helped out in the local community and represented the armed forces through a number of activities. Their activities included:

Armed Forces Day – Wandsworth Council
133 Detachment set up a stand in Southside Shopping centre for the Wandsworth Armed Forces support event 2015. The cadets and staff collected donations for Help for Heroes, gave life-saving technique lessons to the public and gave the public opportunities to try out some cadet activities. They also strengthened links with Decathlon, the sports retailer, which is now a detachment sponsor and supporter.

Operation Reflect – Memorial event with RMP Association
As part of their reflection project for the 100th anniversary of WW1, the cadets researched and found two graves of Military Police soldiers who had died in the Great War and took part in an operation to clean the graves of these soldiers. Along with the Royal Military Police Association and some of their veterans, cadets took part in a memorial ceremony, which included the laying of a wreath and a minute’s silence.

Parading the Standard in France
Officer in charge Lieutenant Cass Sealy, herself from South Africa, and Cadet DaConceaio travelled to France with the South African Legion as banner bearers for the Delville Wood Memorial Event and the entirety of 133 have been invited to join the legion there next year for the 100th anniversary event.

Poppy Collection
133 joined other South West Sector ACF detachments to collect for the Royal British Legion. Despite heavy rain the cadets stood firm and collected over £3,000 on the day.

Battlefields Tour to France
The cadets travelled to France on an educational trip to see the Somme battlefields and took part in a memorial event at the site to remember the fallen.

Recommending 133 Detachment for the Citizenship award Colonel S C Chapman, Commandant for the South West London ACF Sector said: “It is rare to find a detachment that reaches high military standards whilst engaging fully with its communities. 133 Wandsworth (Royal Military Police) Detachment have exceeded even this benchmark by involving all its stakeholders in its activities. The result is young people who understand much more about their social environment and the factors at work in it. They are so much better prepared for life as a result. It must be said that this engagement has come about because of the detachment’s persistence; not everyone saw the advantages until the relationships were in place. This makes the achievement all the more creditable. I have never recommended someone for an award as strongly as I do this detachment: all the members thoroughly deserve the recognition it would bring and I hope to see them acknowledged.”

Lieutenant Cass Sealy, the Officer Commanding 133 Detachment, joined the Army Cadets in 2011. She lives in Hampton and is studying at St Marys University to be a primary school teacher. She said: “We feel very privileged and proud about being nominated for this award. The cadets and staff at 133 Detachment have always been enthusiastic and committed to our community so to be acknowledged for our work makes us very happy … What motivates me in the Cadet Force is every time I get to the point where my motivation has run out all I have to do is attend a parade night. A few hours with my cadets, watching the impact my staff and I have on them makes it all worth it and gives me the motivation to keep going no matter how hard it gets.” 

Photo shows, left to right, Cadet Mckenzie, Lieutenant Cass Sealy, LL Ken Olisa, Sgt Reynolds Cadet Cpl Black.

(Photo courtesy of Stewart Turkington)