Two members of 121 ( Nuneaton ) Squadron of the Air Training Corps have become the first participants in the Duke Of Edinburgh's Millennium Volunteer (MV) scheme to clock up 1000 hours of voluntary work within the community.
21 year old Adult Sergeant Nick Hammond and 19 year old Cadet Sergeant Graham Barber were both presented with their 1000 hours Millennium Volunteer Award Certificates in recognition of their individual voluntary activities within the scheme.
The scheme, which provides nationally recognised accreditation has been running at the squadron since September 2001 and is designed to acknowledge the hard work and commitment of young people, aged 16-24, who give up their free time to help younger cadets and their local communities. There are many benefits to the Millennium Volunteer scheme. The scheme helps participants to gain training and experience in their chosen field of voluntary work it provides an excellent framework for personal development, participants join a nationwide team of well motivated and trained volunteers and the scheme also helps participants to develop the volunteering they already do.
Sergeant Nick Hammond, the first to reach the 1000 hours target said, " During my time with the MV scheme I have spent a considerable amount of time helping to train the younger cadets. I have also been involved with the Squadron band and more recently I have taken on the responsibility for coaching our Field Gun team as well as having the opportunity to help numerous other local community groups such as the Royal British Legion and our local Hospice. I would encourage anybody who has the chance to take part in the scheme to do so. I get a great deal of satisfaction out of knowing that I have been able to make a difference by helping other people and what's even better is that I've enjoyed doing so".
Warwickshire & Birmingham Wing Duke of Edinburgh's Award and Millennium Volunteers coordination Officer, Squadron Leader Bryan Coats said, " I am delighted to have been able to present Sergeant Nick Hammond and Cadet Sergeant Graham Barber with their 1000 hours Millennium Volunteer Award Certificates. They are the first Air Cadets to reach the 1000 hours target and I believe they may even be the first in the entire scheme to receive the award. This is yet another first for our Wing, having recently become the first wing to receive the 75,000 hours certificate thus making us the top-performing Wing in the Air Training corps. The award of these two 1000 hours Millennium Volunteer Award Certificates is going to give a tremendous boost to our attempt to reach our target of becoming the first operating group within the scheme to record 100,000 hours of voluntary activities. The commitment and enthusiasm shown by Nick Hammond and Graham Barber at 121 squadron has been exemplary and has indeed set a precedence for the volunteers who are currently involved in the scheme and the young volunteers of the future "
Flt Lt Ian Crewe Officer Commanding 121 ( Nuneaton ) Squadron said, "One of the primary aims of the Air Training Corps is to promote and develop a spirit of good citizenship amongst our young people. Therefore with this objective in mind the squadron encourages both cadets and eligible staff (unfortunately some of us are too old) to participate in the Millennium Volunteers Award scheme and in doing so we have managed to form closer relationships with many local community and ex-service organisations within the Nuneaton area".
If you would like to know more about the Duke Of Edinburgh's Millennium Volunteer (MV) scheme please visit their web-site at www.millenniumvolunteers.gov.uk