Junior Leaders Fundraising For Canada Trip

March 27, 2013

Bermuda’s junior soldiers are aiming to hit a target – enough funds to help pay for an overseas trip to a sister unit in Canada.

The Bermuda Regiment Junior Leaders recently completed a sponsored car wash at the Rubis gas station in Paget to help fund the July trip to Niagara Falls.

Now they’re planning to raise even more cash by running a food stall at the annual Agricultural Show between April 18-20, as well as assisting organisers at the gates and the closing ceremony.

Junior Leaders Officer Commanding Major Henry Campbell said: “The Junior Leaders teaches leadership, camaraderie and helps develop our youth. Most uniformed services try to have a youth arm and this is ours.”

The Junior Leaders, open to male and female youngsters aged 12-18, take part in a range of adventurous training, including kayaking and abseiling, all under the watchful eye of highly-trained instructors.

They also get training in a range of military activities, including drill and firearms training, with a rigorous emphasis on safety, as well as annual two week camps in Bermuda and trips overseas.

Maj Campbell added that they do spend part of their time assisting community efforts, in particular Lorraine’s Rest Home. He said, “They regularly visit the home to tidy the yard, wash windows, and spend time interacting with the guests by playing music and singing, or sometimes just chatting.”

Maj Campbell continued, “Community service is a vital component to the spirit of the Junior Leaders, everything is aimed at developing better citizens for Bermuda.”

Last weekend, a group did a three-mile route march from Spittal Pond in Smith’s to the Botanical Gardens in Paget as part of their training, complete with loaded Bergens.

Corporal Marcus Christopher, aged 16 and a Berkeley Institute pupil, said his four years in the Junior Leaders would help him achieve his goal of becoming a pilot in the Royal Air Force.

He added: “It’s got me out of doing nothing at the weekends and I enjoy it. It’s about learning to rely on yourself and the rest of the team. It’s given me self-motivation and leadership skills and the physical fitness is good too.”

Acting Sergeant Carl Albuoy, 17, also a Berkeley pupil, has been in the unit for 18 months and said he signed up originally because he lost a bet with his brother.

But he added: “After a while, I got to like it and decided to stay – I enjoy working with my peers and learning to fire a weapon. I’ve learned a lot.”

Maj. Campbell said: “For young people to sign up with us, they need to be high achievers, anyway. But some come here because their parents think they need discipline and others have challenges.

“A lot of them have what it takes – there is too much downplaying of young people. If they turn up here, it’s because they want to be here and they are enhanced by the experience. We give them more structure and development – it’s challenging for them.”

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