Petty Officer Esther Selhi, 42, has volunteered as a Cadet Forces Adult instructor for the past three years. A stay at home Mum of three, she joined the Maidstone unit when her son Saul became a cadet and she heard that they needed help and more staff. She said “It’s very rewarding having cadets who’ve not done something before and seeing their confidence grow and their excitement in their achievements.” Esther is taking advantage of the personal development opportunities. She said “In terms of my own development I’ve trained to become a First Aid instructor, I’ve got an Adventure Leader qualification, as well as being a Duke of Edinburgh supervisor and assessor. I’m also currently half way through my Basic Expedition Leader course”
Cadet Molly Salmon, 12, enjoys all the boating experiences and courses that come with being a sea cadet. A member of the Gosport Unit, Molly has a passion for climbing. She said “I love all the climbing that we get to do and being able to climb real rocks outside is an amazing opportunity.” She added “If it wasn’t for Sea Cadets I wouldn’t really know who I was or what I like to do. I totally recommend it – it’s so enjoyable”.
Civilian Instructor Joshua Smets, 20, is an outdoor instructor during the week and joined the High Wycombe Unit Sea Cadets ten months ago. He said “I was a Royal Marine cadet from the age of 13 to 18 and I realised that I was doing all the outdoor pursuits that I’d done in cadets as my job and I found myself missing the cadet environment. I got in touch and asked if I could bring my skills to my old unit and got onto all the courses so I can now instruct the cadets in these activities.” He added “I enjoy seeing a smile on a kid’s face when the achieve something knowing that you’ve contributed to that achievement. With Cadets you see them develop and grow in confidence. It’s very rewarding and sometimes it’s hard work but the rewards definitely outweigh the hardship.”
Ordinary Cadet Saul Selhi, 14, is a Sea Cadet at the Maidstone Unit which he joined because he wanted to learn to kayak. He said “I like kayaking and once I found out about the adventure training activities that sea cadets can do, I wanted to do that too”. As well as kayaking, Saul enjoys climbing, shooting and camping. He added “Taking part in this adventure training week has shown me that I can do more than I thought I could do when I’m pushed a bit outside of my comfort zone”.
Cadet First Class Gabrielle Sellstrom, 13, is a Sea Cadet with Camberley Unit. She said “I joined three years ago because my Dad is one of the instructors and so I’ve been brought up with Sea Cadets. I really love all the different activities though and it’s fun meeting new people and being able to go on different courses. This adventure training week is the by far the best course I’ve been on. I’m very proud of myself as I’ve conquered my fear of heights. Doing that climb just now was amazing. Tomorrow we’re doing the zip wires and I’m looking forward to that.” Gabby continued “Sea cadets has given me more confidence to go in the direction I want to go in life”.
Leading Cadet Sophie Rusling, 17, is a student at the UK Sailing Academy in Cowes on the Isle of Wight and is a sea cadet at the Cowes unit. She said “I joined six and half years ago because it seemed a fun thing to do and offered a lot of opportunities.” She added “This week has been awesome. I came along on this course two years ago and I was petrified of heights and the staff have really helped me to overcome this. I’m definitely into rock climbing now, and I’m not afraid to push myself. I’m looking forward to the 100ft freefall which we are doing tomorrow.”