Emergency services cadet Rebecca Cordner at Mt Morgan SES rooms. Photo Allan Reinikka / The Morning Bulletin
Emergency services cadet Rebecca Cordner at Mt Morgan SES rooms. Photo Allan Reinikka / The Morning Bulletin Allan Reinikka

New cadets program launched, months after SES Cadets axed

MONTHS after the State Government axed the SES Cadets program, a new cadet program has been launched.

Mount Morgan lost its last youth program in October when the Emergency Services cadet program shut down.

The State Government axed the cadet program with Yeppoon's last meeting on October 11 and Mt Morgan on October 15.

The axing also blocked an educational pathway for young people to get into emergency service careers.

There are 52 cadets across Rockhampton region - 38 in Yeppoon and 14 at Mt Morgan - and six cadet units in Central Queensland.

At least three Mt Morgan cadets will miss out on four vital points towards their Queensland Certificate of Education.

It is believed their schools are trying to get them through courses in time to have enough points to get their QCE.

Today, the PCYC Emergency Services Cadet program has been officially launched by Premier Campbell Newman, Police Minister Jack Dempsey and Assistant Minister for Emergency Volunteers Ted Malone.

The program has been expanded to include closer relationships with all emergency services and, for the first time, a link with the Queensland Police Service (QPS) through a partnership with the Police Citizens Youth Club (PCYC) and Emergency Management Queensland.

Premier Newman said the revitalised Cadet program was the key to providing youth an opportunity for a career in emergency services and volunteering.

"The take up rate for Cadets joining the State Emergency Service (SES) or other services under the old program, did not meet our expectations," Mr Newman said.

"We want to give Cadets an opportunity to experience a wider range of emergency service skills, to really give them a taste for the roles available to them and greater interaction with serving staff."

Mr Dempsey said the partnership with the PCYC was a perfect mix because of the organisation's long-term commitment to Queensland's youngsters.

"For 65 years the PCYC has been providing the State's youth with everything from sporting opportunities to mentoring programs turning many Queensland children into responsible young adults," Mr Dempsey said.

"I am confident this experience will produce a valuable stream of community-minded youngsters ready to take the next step to becoming Queensland's best and brightest in uniform."

Mr Malone said he looked forward to seeing a new and revitalised Cadet program and previous groups coming back on-board including many new youngsters ready to take on the personal challenge.

"In the coming weeks the PCYC will be in contact with SES and former Cadet groups to bring on-board youths between the high school ages of 12 to 17 to be part of the exciting program," Mr Malone said.

"The Cadets will not only gain skills from the SES, Fire and Ambulance Services, they will now have firm ties with the QPS, giving them the opportunity to have a greater understanding of what each service offers and in turn what they can offer each service."

PCYC Chief Executive Officer Rob Fiedler said each Cadet will automatically become members of the PCYC and they will also be encouraged to take part in all of the organisation's activities.

"PCYC has 53 branches throughout Queensland and each emergency services Cadet will be welcome into any of our facilities, to take part in more than 100 activities ranging from sport to youth leadership programs," Mr Fiedler said.

"We look forward to engaging with the new Cadets and being part of an exciting partnership between QPS and all other arms of the emergency services family."

Additional information:

·         Cadet programs will be run by the SES (at SES facilities) with administration run by the PCYC

·         Youth will be encouraged to consider careers in all available emergency services

·         All former Cadets and first timers are encouraged to join

·         Cadets will learn aspects of SES, Police, Fire and Ambulance work

·         It is free to join

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