New look youth programme for St John

The youth sections of St John Guernsey have an updated and exciting programme for 2019. The new look curriculum provides opportunities for Cadets and Badgers to take part in activities which promote personal development and core activities, which are both fun and educational.

Children can join St John from the age of six, when they can become a Badger. Badgers meet once a week on either a Tuesday or Friday and take part in a lively programme of activities, which contribute to their Super Badger Award. Subjects covered by Badgers include first aid, communication, the environment, safety and the community. Badgers can also learn about the history of St John and the importance of healthy and active lifestyles.

Older children, aged between 10 and 18 can join Cadets, where they learn first aid and other life skills. Like Badgers, St John Cadets also work towards gaining an award. The Grand Prior Award can be achieved by completing various subject badges, which focus on areas such as personal development, creativity, communication, service, lifestyle and community. Once trained in first aid Cadets also have the opportunity to volunteer for first aid duty at community events, such as fetes and summer shows.

Some of the older Cadets and Badgers also go on to represent St John Guernsey in inter-insular competitions to test their first aid skills against other young people.

Youth leader Jackie Pattimore said “This year is very exciting with the launching of a new structured programme. This will give the cadets an amazing opportunity to advance their skills not only in first aid but in a wide range of subjects throughout the Grand Prior scheme.

Jackie added “We can offer so much more than just learning first aid. The life skills we teach can hopefully help set our cadets up for life. I believe this is a positive step for St John Youth in keeping up with the latest syllabus and most importantly fun activities. 

As leaders can benefit from a more structured lesson plan, with resources to implement the lessons more effectively. This not only helps us to improve the cadet’s skills but also ours as leaders and trainers as well.”

As a youngster Daryl Bye was a St John Cadet, now having been through the youth programme he has become a youth leader. Mr Bye said “I got a lot out of being a Cadet. Later as Cadet Sergeant I developed a lot of leadership skills. When I became a youth leader was able to support the youngsters through their journey with St John. These young people are the future of the charity and it is nice to see them start to succeed and progress with St John.”

There are currently around seventy under-18s who are members of either Badgers or Cadets in Guernsey. Badgers meet after school on either a Tuesday or Friday, and Cadets meet in the evening of the same days.

For more details about becoming a St John Badger or Cadets please contact sally.byrne@stjohn.gg

St John Guernsey Chief Operating Officer, Nikki Harrison added “I’m really delighted to see our youth sections continuing to grow and develop on the great work that has been going on in recent years. The new programme allows our young people to build their confidence and instil a culture of team work. 

Mrs Harrison added “I’d also like to take this opportunity to say a big thank you to our former head of youth, Josie Guille, for all of her dedication, enthusiasm and hard work with St John Badgers and Cadets over many years. Her commitment and leadership has been greatly appreciated by the young people and the charity.”