Celebrating Reserves Day today with SKDC's Drew Palmer

Drew Palmer so enjoyed his time as an Army Cadet that seven years ago he became a Cadet Force Adult Volunteer 'to give something back to the younger generation'.

Most of the time he's one of the helpful voices on the end of the telephone for South Kesteven District Council's Customer Services Team, specialising in housing matters, but twice a week he takes on the rank of Staff Sergeant Instructor for a very different role. 

Drew instructs with two different detachments,  the Royal Logistics Corps and The Royal Lancers, together involving almost 100 youngsters between 12 and 18 and meeting weekly at Grantham's Prince William of Gloucester Barracks.

Activities include shooting, first aid, and forest craft and all help to instil citizenship, respect and loyalty. There are also cadet groups in Bourne, Stamford and Deepings for youngsters wanting to join. All uniform groups are sponsored by the Ministry of Defence.

Each year Drew wears his uniform proudly on Reserves Day, the Wednesday of Armed Forces Week, when the nation pays tribute to the thousands of reservists making their contribution to the British military.

He said: "I used to be a cadet myself, but now volunteer as an adult because I want to give something back to the younger generation.  The cadet force is about fun, friendship and adventure and it's amazing to see youngsters grow and mature during their teenage years and feel that you have played a part in that.

"It's important for businesses to see the benefits of having reservists on their staff and important for the military to have a strong reservist force. I would urge everyone to take a look at both the Cadet Force and Army Reservists and see the opportunities."

The Covid-19 crisis has prevented normal weekly meetings, but technology has stepped in to create virtual training and one practical community role has seen cadets out litter-picking during the pandemic.  

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