Castlegar Air Cadets are meeting online. Photo: Castlegar Air Cadets

Castlegar Air Cadets are meeting online. Photo: Castlegar Air Cadets

Castlegar cadets face new normal

Cadets are meeting online for the time being

Submitted by Castlegar Air Cadets

Tuesday, Oct. 20 marked the start of a unique Cadet season as Castlegar Air Cadets gathered not in person, but virtually in a Zoom meeting.

The Cadet program nationwide has been on hiatus since April 15 as a direct result of COVID-19, when Brig.-Gen. D.B Cochrane, the commander of the National Cadet and Junior Canadian Ranger Support Group issued direction that all in-person activities related to the Cadet programs throughout Canada be cancelled till at least Aug. 31 as a safety precaution to address the troubling concern of COVID-19. The Castlegar squadron has been on stand down since then and is now starting up in a virtual format.

“It’s great to see Cadets starting again,” said 2nd Lt. Barb Makortoff, the squadron’s administration officer. “Online is better than the alternative of not having cadets at all. COVID has greatly affected [us] considering it’s been over six months since we have functioned normally, it will take a little time to get everyone back in the swing of things.”

While the cadets will be getting back into the swing of things it will be far from a normal routine as the Department of National Defense (DND) who is responsible for running the program has put into place many protection measures to ensure the safety of the cadets and officers.

“[We have been] supplied with enough non-medical masks (NMM) to outfit all of [our] cadets and officers, and any time we meet in-person, we must wear them at all times when in-person.” said Lt. (N) Llora McTeer, acting commanding officer for the Squadron. “We have received heavy-duty wipes and spray bottles, as well as funding to purchase disinfectants and hand sanitizer.” The cadets will also be required to practice social distancing when they do return to in-person activities. In addition, all high-touch surfaces must be cleaned regularly, and hand sanitizer must be used upon entry into the cadet hall.

“Over the next several months, we will slowly begin to incorporate more and more in-person activities as our policies and staffing levels permit.” said McTeer. “For the short-term, we have approximately one in-person activity scheduled per month, and an hour per week of virtual training, so the cadets don’t fall too far behind in their programs.”

But while cadets return to action in a virtual format, the return to in-person activities is still a ways off, even with COVID-19 precautions being addressed, as the Kiwanis Community Hall that the cadets call home has developed a leak in the roof that has caused significant water damage to the interior.

“We are fortunate that our insurance will cover the extensive water damage that has occurred to the interior of the hall, with a deductible of $5,000, but it won’t cover the roof repair.” said Shelley Hastie, the squadron sponsoring committee’s treasurer.

The sponsoring committee for the 581 Squadron has started a GoFundMe campaign to help raise the money necessary for the roof repairs, but the committee is looking at a nearly $30,000 repair bill. The Kiwanis Hall is also home of the community Sharing Pot, a soup kitchen that typically runs on Tuesdays at noon.

The cadet program is still open to accepting all youth between the ages of 12-18 years old with a focus on leadership, citizenship and healthy living during this time of COVID-19. For more information you can visit their Facebook page at www.facebook.com/CastlegarCadets or website at 581castlegaraircadets.ca.

Just Posted

Forty sled dogs were seized by the BC SPCA from a Salmo kennel in February. A recent ruling has decided the dogs won’t be returned. Photo: Gounsil/Flickr
BC Farm Industry Review Board rules against Salmo kennel after 40 sled dogs seized

Spirit of the North Kennels was also ordered to pay BC SPCA $64,000

Residents line up outside the Vernon Recreation Complex for their COVID-19 vaccine Saturday, June 5. (Jennifer Smith - Morning Star)
No appointments necessary for first dose COVID-19 vaccine: Interior Health

People can just show up at clinics, register on the spot and get the shot

Image: Castleview Care Centre’s Safety Den presentation
Castlegar’s Castleview Care Centre wins safety innovation competition

The Dragon’s Den-style competition was sponsored by Safecare BC

SD20 now has an electric bus. Photo: Submitted
Kootenay-Columbia School District 20 adds electric bus to fleet

Bus will be incorporated into Castlegar route for next school year

Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry on Thursday, June 10, mentioned Grand Forks among two other COVID “hot spots” in B.C. Photo: Screenshot - YouTube COVID-19 BC Update, June 10, 2021
PHO Henry says West Kootenay city is a COVID ‘hot spot’ in B.C.

There are 11 cases of COVID-19 in the Grand Forks local health area, according the BC CDC

At an outdoor drive-in convocation ceremony, Mount Royal University bestows an honorary Doctor of Laws on Blackfoot Elder and residential school survivor Clarence Wolfleg in Calgary on Tuesday, June 8, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
‘You didn’t get the best of me’: Residential school survivor gets honorary doctorate

Clarence Wolfleg receives honorary doctorate from Mount Royal University, the highest honour the school gives out

Denmark’s Christian Eriksen receives medical attention after collapsing during the Euro 2020 soccer championship group B match between Denmark and Finland at Parken stadium in Copenhagen, Saturday, June 12, 2021. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner, Pool)
Denmark soccer player Christian Eriksen collapses during game against Finland

Eriksen was given chest compressions after collapsing on the field during a European Championship

Members of the Department of Fisheries and Oceans’ Marine Mammal Response Program rescued an adult humpback what that was entangled in commercial fishing gear in the waters off of Entrance Island on Thursday, June 10. (Photo courtesy Marine Mammal Response Program)
Rescuers free humpback ‘anchored’ down by prawn traps off Vancouver Island

Department of Fisheries and Oceans responders spend hours untangling whale

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

As stories of the horrors of residential schools circulate after the Tk’emlups te Secwepemc First Nation announced it had located what are believed to be the remains of 215 children, Grand Chief Stewart Phillip of the Union of B.C. Indian Chiefs said he feels a connection with the former students. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
2 sides of the same coin: Ex-foster kids identify with residential school survivors

Grand Chief Stewart Phillip says the child welfare system takes Indigenous children from their families

Nathan Watts, a member of the Tseshaht First Nation near Port Alberni, shares his story of substance use, a perspective he said isn’t seen enough. (Photo courtesy of Nathan Watts)
Public shaming, hate perpetuates further substance use: UVic researcher

Longtime addict Nathan Watts offers a user’s perspective on substance use

57-year-old Kathleen Richardson was discovered deceased in her home Wednesday, June 9, 2021. Her death is considered a homicide and connected to the slain brothers found on a Naramata forest road. (Submitted)
Condolences pour in for Kathy Richardson, Naramata’s 3rd homicide victim in recent weeks

Richardson was well liked in the community, a volunteer firefighter with a home-based salon

A person receives a COVID-19 vaccine at a vaccination clinic run by Vancouver Coastal Health, in Richmond, B.C., Saturday, April 10, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
More than 75% of B.C. adults have 1st dose of COVID vaccine

The federal government has confirmed a boost in the Moderna vaccine will be coming later this month

Most Read