Civil Air Patrol in your community

 Serving community and country from home (for now)

 

All across the nation, members of the Civil Air Patrol, the US Air Force’s official civilian auxiliary, are continuing their regular duties during this period of social distancing:  Serving their communities, and meeting and training through virtual meetings.  There has never been an easier time to preview what the Civil Air Patrol is all about than right now, by attending one of these meetings.

The local Flight of Civil Air Patrol, which normally meets in person at the Southwest Michigan Regional Airport in Benton Harbor, is continuing its mission by conducting these virtual meetings and training weekly at 6:00PM on Monday evenings. You can request to join a meeting by contacting Senior Member Holt at  CAP.SM.Cameron.Holt@gmail.com or check out the Wolverine Composite Flight through Facebook or Instagram.

Regular meetings are held to keep members and the Flight on track with training and advancement through video and document sharing. Even during the virtual meetings, members wear their USAF-style uniforms, which are worn with pride and honor as members of CAP.

Civil Air Patrol (or CAP, like baseball ‘cap’), has already been very progressive towards a flexible, online learning, training and development system over the past several years. This has been a powerful advancement for CAP, enhancing its capability to meet the everyday needs of families and members by enabling members with very diverse personal schedules to participate.  This has also made the transition to full online learning during this pandemic that much easier. The materials, platforms, and even the regulations have quickly been updated to make this possible.

So just what does Civil Air Patrol do and who are its members?  CAP members consist of Cadets, young men and women aged 12 to 20 years, and Senior members (21+ years) from all walks of life. While CAP is the USAF auxiliary and aerospace is a major portion of the CAP mission, most members are neither pilots nor fly on a regular basis (but those opportunities are available too!). CAP focuses on three main pillars:  Aerospace Education, Cadet Programs, and Emergency Services.  Members learn to embody the Core Values of Integrity, Respect, Volunteer Service and Excellence throughout their CAP journey and in everyday life. CAP is an excellent organization for community members to employ their skills to further CAP’s three main missions; in addition, it is also an organization that provides professional development, life skills and character-building training for cadets and adult members. Assignments in CAP vary greatly and are not thrust upon members. Rather, members are encouraged to choose programs that are of most interest to them. No matter what programs are chosen or how long a member chooses to stay with CAP, there is not a military commitment at any time. Annual out of pocket costs are as little as $40 for Cadets and $65 for Senior members, and financial assistance is available for uniforms, cadet programs, and encampments.

Various seasonal encampments offer great opportunities for Cadets and professional development for adult members. It’s amazing to see the positive transformation of cadets after encampments. The activities/experiences are also an amazing dollar value and include things from white water rafting to search and rescue training to piloting aircraft!  

If you want to know more about Civil Air Patrol or about how to join a meeting with the Wolverine Flight, please contact Senior Member Cameron Holt at CAP.SM.Cameron.Holt@gmail.comto receive an email with helpful links and materials that guide a prospective member to quick guides on CAP.

We look forward to seeing you at a meeting and serving our community (from wherever we are!).




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