It is an honour and privilege to have been appointed as Chair of the Ontario Provincial Committee (OPC) of the Air Cadet League of Canada (ACLC). My background with the program is primarily at the Squadron Sponsoring Committee (SSC) and Board of Governors level – I was never a Cadet nor was I a Cadet Instructor Cadre (CIC) officer. I have served the OPC as a Governor and have held the positions of Treasurer and First Vice Chair. I do have extensive experience as a Director of Not for Profit Corporations and was recruited to the Board for those skills.
With almost 9,000 cadets in the Cadets Canada (Air) program in Ontario, our volunteers are faced with the challenge of supporting Canadian Armed Forces Regular and Cadet Instructional Cadre personnel assigned to the program. We do a phenomenal job!
The largest group of Cadets in the most populous province requires big infrastructure. Our greatest assets are our staff and volunteers. The rules, regulations, legislation and processes necessary to ensure the safety and support of all participants in the program require careful and accurate background screening of volunteers. All volunteers are screened to the highest standard including every Governor, Squadron and Regional Director and at the SSC, Civilian Instructor (CI) and Civilian Volunteer (CV) level – those closest to the Cadets. With more than 2,000 active members, the OPC staff are always busy, especially at the beginning of a training year.
While ACLC receives some direct funding from the DND, none of that comes to the OPC. All SSCs strive to provide funding for the best experience possible for Ontario’s Air Cadets. Fundraising is a primary activity, requiring the participation of everyone involved – volunteers, parents, officers and cadets. As the economy and government funding of the DND portion of the program feels pressure, the Board notes that there is an expectation that the volunteers will take up the slack. During this term of the Board, we will be concentrating on reviewing and renewing our fundraising practices, to help combat donor fatigue, and to provide additional supports to local Squadron efforts as well as boosting Provincially directed campaigns. Current methods may not have run their course, but new options must be examined. Members can expect to be informed through timely updates as we work with professionals to establish goals and processes.
I’m looking forward to a busy year.
To Learn, to serve, to advance.
Daniel (Dan) Hutt