Volunteer gains skills with Army Cadet Force

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An adult volunteer from Derbyshire has described how being a member of the Army Cadet Force (ACF) has allowed her to gain a qualification that has been beneficial to her day job.

Sergeant Instructor Whitney Early, 26, volunteers at Derbyshire ACF’s Eckington detachment, and works full-time in distribution industry in an administration based role.

Being an adult volunteer in the ACF allows individuals to meet new people, take part in a variety of activities and learn to lead or organise activities, as well as having the opportunity to learn new skills and gain qualifications.

Whitney, who lives in Chesterfield, achieved her First Aid at Work qualification through the ACF, and thanks to this is now an appointed first aider in her full-time job.

She said: “There are so many benefits about being an adult volunteer. I’ve gained many new friends through the ACF, as well as gaining my First Aid qualification and shooting range certificates. If volunteers want to they can take part in BTEC and Duke of Edinburgh’s awards, as well as having the chance to gain leadership or activity based certificates to allow them to lead adventure training activities for example.”

Joining the ACF as an adult volunteer three years ago, was a great decision for Whitney and she has not looked back since.

She added: “I was previously a cadet many moons ago. I joined when I was 13 years-old and only stayed with the cadets for about three years as when I turned 16 I got myself a full-time job and my time became limited. I was away from the ACF for about seven years before I decided to re-join as an adult volunteer.

“Initially, I thought I would fill out the application form and see what happened but looking back now it was the best thing I did coming back, I have not regretted my decision.

“For me the best part of being an adult volunteer is watching the cadets grow and progress into being young adults. Seeing what the cadets do during their time in the ACF is amazing, to have the sense of achievement that I have helped them and been a part of their cadet journey is amazing.”

Derbyshire ACF has detachments across the county including Derby, Chesterfield, Long Eaton, Buxton, Glossop, Ilkeston, New Mills, Matlock and Chapel-En-Le Frith.

To find out more about volunteering in your area with the ACF call 01332 772025 or email em-der-ao1@rfca.mod.uk.