The Cadet Program is a proud Canadian tradition that provides regiment and discipline into teenagers’ lives. It also teaches cadets about the spirit of generosity, having them help out with the Royal Canadian Legion’s poppy campaigns.
The Legion in Kelowna, Branch 26, is giving the cadets in the area $7,000 for their help gathering donations for this year’s poppy campaign.
Cory Schieman, the president of Legion Branch 26, has worked in Kelowna for the last two years, but has been involved with the Legion for more than a decade.
“The Royal Canadian Legion tries to support all of our cadet corps in their training and their activities,” Schieman said.
“For example, the Air Cadets may have a glider exercise or something that they need additional money for training or equipment or accommodation … we cut three cheques, one for each of our Cadet Corps we sponsor.”
The Legion donates to the cadets every year to help pay for upcoming training or events. This year, the Cadets sent out a request for financial support, but Schieman would donate whether there was a request or not.
“Even if we did not receive a financial request from the Cadet Corps, we would make sure that they receive some of the poppy money for their training,” Schieman said.
“Just because they do support us throughout the year.”
The time of year that the Legion donates to the cadets isn’t set. Schieman said they usually wait for the cadet requests so that there’s a specific cause that the money is going to.
“We wait to kind of trigger that process once a cadet starts looking for money for their training.”
The amount of money the Legion donates is based on the success of their poppy campaigns. But Schieman tries to give a little more every year to help with the rising costs of living.
“We typically use the dollar value that we have given them last year, if that works into the funds available through the poppy campaign,” Schieman said. “Last year, I think we gave them $6,000. This year we upped it by $1,000 because the cost of everything is going up.
“We don’t want them to fall in hardship.”
Schieman said that people in Kelowna interested in being involved with the Legion can visit kelownalegion.ca.