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Meriden Cadets receive penultimate award

The "boomerang and torch" badges

Three Meriden Cadets have been commended on their completion of the National Adventure Training Award, the penultimate award in the Cadets program.

WO2 Bruna Da Costa, WO2 Eduarda Da Costa and WO2 Lillian Havansky will be presented with the coveted “boomerang and torch” badge after passing the rigorous five-day challenge with flying colours. The badge is the highest accolade that can be worn on a Cadet’s uniform and the students are the first Meriden Cadets to attempt and complete the challenge as part of the Trinity Grammar School Army Cadet Unit.

LT (AAC) Fiona Brennan, Meriden Coordinator of Cadets, said the School is proud of the girls who have completed another first for their Unit.

“WO2 B Da Costa, WO2 E Da Costa and WO2 Havansky have opened a new door for Meriden Cadets and shown how satisfying it can be to persevere through difficult challenges,” she said.

“The NATA is an institution among Cadets and is known for bringing Cadets face-to-face with the unexpected. The girls, who have shown that they are strong, responsible and self-reliant leaders within our Cadet unit, continued to display these qualities in a challenging, unfamiliar environment.”

“Our Cadets were commended by rank members on their decision-making, observation and leadership skills and for embodying the Australian Army Cadets program values of Courage, Initiative, Respect and Teamwork throughout the NATA,” LT Brennan said.

The National Adventure Training Award is known for its physically-demanding challenges and for providing opportunities for senior Cadets to step into leadership roles in high-pressure situations. Meriden Cadets undertook extensive training for the event and the girls completed a series of pre-selection tests to ensure they met satisfactory levels of personal skill and fitness before embarking on the Award.

The Award sees teams of Cadets test the skills they have learnt through the program, including watermanship, bush navigation and survival skills, as well as physical and mental endurance. They are mentored by active members of the Australian Defence Force as they walk cross country and undertake a series of complex tasks that test their logic, teamwork and initiative. Cadets are individually assessed on activities such as day and night navigation, casualty evacuation and field engineering, which examines their skill with knots and lashings. The field activities are designed to be the most physically demanding tasks in which Cadets can participate.

The final milestone in the Cadets program looms for WO2 B Da Costa, WO2 E Da Costa and WO2 Havansky – the Chief of Army Cadet Team Challenge – during which they will walk more that seventy kilometres cross country and complete a range of difficult tasks.

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