ARMY cadets from Wondai and Nanango units are out in the community at flag raising ceremonies on Australia Day and play a key role in the South Burnett on Anzac Day and Remembrance Day.
From the age of 13, high school students can become part of the 14 Battalion cadets, the largest youth development program funded by the Australian defence force and run by the Australian Army.
As a captain at Nanango cadets Jenni Wilson enjoys seeing the kids develop through the personal development and leadership cadets provides by adopting a military environment.
“Some of them have come in quiet and shy and their confidence has increased because and because of they learn discipline we have been told some of their grades have increased at school,” she said.
Wondai cadets captain Andrew Sampson also finds being involved rewarding.
“You watch them grow up because they come in as 13 years and leave as young adults some of them go to the defence force or other jobs,” he said.
“We cover anything that will give some kids some benefit as they grow.
“The first year is participating in events and as they progress through it is all about leadership.”
For cadets the year starts with a focus on preparing for Anzac Day and then focus switches to hiking and camping in preparation for the annual southeast Queensland camp in September.
At the camp, 1000 kids from across the state come together for a week.
The cadets at Nanango are dedicated to their training with all 12 kids taking part in training at Nanango State High School from 5pm-8pm each Tuesday.
The cadets will be welcoming new members at their first night for 2019 on February 5.
The Wondai cadets will be in action on Australia Day and will be encouraging other kids to get involved at their open day at Wondai 25/49 RQR Depot on February 10.