Basseterre, St. Kitts, September 15, 2012 (SKNIS): The positive attributes that are nurtured in young persons involved in goal-oriented organizations were showcased on Friday (September 14) evening when members of the Royal St. Christopher and Nevis Police Force Junior Drum Corps and St. Kitts-Nevis Cadet Corps took part in a drill display.
The event, staged on the Bay Road in front of Ram’s Supermarket, was organized as part of official activities marking the Federation’s 29th Anniversary of Independence. The Drum Corps members began the display beating out familiar military tunes as they paraded in the street. A half hour later, the Cadets – who had just completed rehearsals for the Ceremonial Independence Day Parade on September 19 – precisely executed foot and arms military drills (some of which were silent) to the delight of the large crowd that had gathered.
Some of the young people expressed pleasure for the opportunity to be spotlighted exclusively during the performance. They were grateful for the show of public support and looked forward to participating in other events.
Inspector of Police Lyndon David told SKNIS that the Junior Drum Corps started about two years ago and is part of the community policing initiative. Its members range between 9 and 16 years old and the group learns about discipline.
“Not only discipline in terms of behaviour but we look at time management, the way they carry themselves, the way they speak to persons and each other,” he said, noting his appreciation to parents for allowing their children to come to practice on Mondays and Wednesdays.
The theme for the 2012 Independence celebrations is “Cherishing Children, Strengthening Families.”
“Everyone in the Junior Drum Corps are children, and this shows that the police are embracing children,” Inspector David explained. “The police are encouraging children and the police want to ensure that our children – our future, stay on a positive track.”
Meanwhile, Warrant Officer Steven Hanley of the St. Kitts-Nevis Defence Force said he was proud of the development of the group. He revealed that a contingent of 11 Cadets from Nevis participated in the drills along with their counterparts from St. Kitts and commended their performance given the limited practice time.
“It gives them a sense of patriotism,” he said. “They learn about the symbolism of Independence, where we came from and how we got to this stage [of development]. Knowing that they are a part of the celebration means knowing they are a part of history.”
The soldier credited the Cadet Corps for “shaping the man he is today.” He encouraged parents to consider enrolling their children into the programme noting that it helps to keep members productively occupied while teaching the value of teamwork and leadership.
Independence activities continue on Sunday, September 16 which is designated National Heroes Day. Flag raising ceremonies will be held in communities across the Federation, while Governor General His Excellency Sir Cuthbert Sebastian, Prime Minister the Right Honourable Dr. Denzil Douglas and persons from all walks of life will participate in a wreath laying ceremony at the Robert L. Bradshaw Community Park in St. Pauls.