Another top award for Whitianga Coastguard Unit

05 Oct 2021

For the second year in a row, the Whitianga Volunteer Coastguard Unit was the recipient of the Community Engagement Unit of the Year award at the national Coastguard Awards of Excellence. According to Coastguard New Zealand, the award recognises “excellence in the areas of public relations, fundraising or community engagement activity by an individual or group”.

The awards ceremony happened online last Sunday.

In a statement issued after the awards ceremony, Coastguard New Zealand said the Whitianga Coastguard Unit’s Alan Jackson Memorial Cadet programme is a stand-out achievement in terms of what it provides for the local community and the Coastguard profile. “Inspired by late long-serving Coastguard volunteer patron, Alan Jackson, and his dream to develop a Coastguard cadetship, the programme was successfully launched in 2019 as a platform to introduce youth to the world of leadership, self-discipline, responsibility, and health and safety on the water and in the workplace,” the statement said. “The young cadets, made up of 10 teenage students from the local school, receive an insight into how Coastguard works from the radio operators, wet crew, and Incident Management Team over an intensive 12-week period. The cadetship aims to provide youth with skills to set them up with a lifetime of safe boating knowledge.

“The cadetship programme has allowed the Whitianga [Coastguard] Unit to give something back to the community to show their appreciation for the support given over many years. It has generated an interest in Coastguard activities by a much younger age group than is usually the case and has undoubtedly cemented itself within the local community and culture.”

Pictured are the Whitianga Coastguard cadets who have recently completed the 2021 Alan Jackson Memorial Cadet Programme