joining ACF

Discussion in 'OTC and ACF' started by shshelicopters, Mar 8, 2005.

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  1. This may have been asked before, but i'm going to ask it anyway. I am considering joining the ACF as an adult instructor, i am currently in the TA with 7 years experience and before that i was in the regular army for 7 years. will this be of benefit to a ACF unit and what do you get out of being an adult instructor?
  2. instructor type a- you get to lord it over kids to compensate for your lack of stature in the real world

    type b- you get the satisfaction of teaching younger people and seeing them enjoy themselves. if this isnt why you want to join, the why the hell would you?? :?
  3. Here goes......

    Have a look at to get a general idea of what is on offer.

    The Army Cadet Force is not part of the Army. However it does use the uniforms, traditions and badges of rank of its Regular and Territorial Army sponsors. All adults in the ACF are youth workers. There's no danger of military "call up". Adult instructors fall into two categories:

    Adult instructors who hold "non-commissioned officer" army ranks
    ACF Officers who hold a Special Territorial Army Commission.

    Adult instructors of any rank may be considered for a commission at any time in their ACF service.

    Your first posting as a sergeant instructor will be with an experienced adult instructor in a detachment of up to 30 cadets in your home area.
    You will prepare for your nine day initial training course (run by a regular army cadet training team) which you will be expected to attend in your first year, and which will give you added knowledge and thus confidence as an instructor.

    By now you will have a considerable amount of experience of working with cadets in a detachment. You will also have passed the Instructor's course held at the Cadet Training Centre at Frimley Park in Surrey. This position carries extra responsibilities within the detachment and you will find yourself taking a lead in decision making about what you and your cadets do.

    After further service and more extensive training you may be considered for promotion. One appointment might be that of Company Sergeant Major in which you will have responsibilities for a number of detachments over a wider area.

    This is the highest non-commissioned rank and if you reach this you will have demonstrated your leadership and management skills over a long period of service. This is a position requiring great experience and knowledge of the organisation, its activities and of course of Cadets.


    It is most likely that as a second lieutenant your first posting will be that of detachment commander. You will soon start training however to progress up the chain of command.

    As a Lieutenant you will have passed your Instructors Course and will be in a position to take charge of far more activities.

    Promotion to Captain will see you as a senior detachment commander. Alternatively you may find yourself undertaking duties which assist an entire county or ACF Battalion to develop its cadets. One such position might be as training officer scheduling and organising activities for all of the detachments in that ACF.

    As a Major you will normally command a company (which will consist of a number of detachments in a given area of the county or ACF's region. You will be responsible to the ACF Commandant for all aspects of training and administration.

    From Major, opportunities exist for promotion to senior ranks of Lieutenant Colonel and Colonel as Deputy Commandant of the County ACF or its Commandant. These are highly respected roles involving not only the management of the County as a whole but also ensuring that the ACF maintains its close contacts with the communities within which it sits and the Army who provide so much support and assistance to cadets.

    Q Will I get paid for being an adult instructor in the ACF?
    A The short answer is yes, but no one joins for the money. You will get paid at rates of pay similar to those of the Territorial Army for up to 28 days per year. However it is not something any ACF adult instructor focus on and most do many more days for the enjoyment of it. The real rewards are seeing cadets turn into promising young men and women who will make a positive contribution to society.

    Q Would I get paid any expenses?
    A Allowances for out of pocket travelling expenses are available.

    Q As an adult instructor in the ACF would I be liable for military call up in the event of a national emergency?
    A No. Adult Instructor are not liable for military duty.

    Q Before becoming an ACF Adult Instructor will I have to undergo any security vetting?
    A Yes. Because you will be working with young people we have to check that you do not have anything which would bar you from contact with children. This process is now carried out by all organistions working with young people and takes a short while during your initial induction period.

    Q Do I need any specialist skills or previous experience to become an adult instructor with the ACF?
    A No, the ACF will teach you all you need to know about the military skills and about working with and developing young people.

    Q What is the time commitment?
    A The commitment is as much as you want to make it, but clearly there are responsibilities that go along with being in charge of cadets and if you don't turn up they don't get the chance to train. Most detachments meet once or twice a week, there are occasional weekends away and you will be expected to attend the annual camp which is one or two weeks outdoor activity usually in the summer months.

    Q Can I gain any qualifications in the ACF?
    A Yes, as well as in house qualifications the ACF also offers the opportunity to gain widely recognised qualifications such as NVQs and the Duke of Edinburgh's Award. Training its volunteers is part of the ACF's core business and it is very aware of what it can add and makes sure it does add to the CVs of its adult instructors.

    Q Will I have to buy any uniform?
    A No all your uniform will be provided as will all the equipment you need to lead and train cadets.

    Q Are there any particular professions you are short of?
    A The ACF is particularly keen to attract people who can bring the skills of their civilian life to benefit cadets, such as chefs, mechanics, IT and people with skills in management

    Q Do I need to have some military background to become an adult instructor in the ACF?
    A Not at all, ACF adult instructors are youth workers first and foremost. We can teach you all the military skills, it is your ability and enthusiasm to work with young people that we need.

    All the above is from the ACF Site, but I would say get yourself along to your local unit, and see if you like it, get away on a weekend (gives you a chance to see HOW DIFFERENT it is from the Regs and the TA) and also gives the ACF a chance to see if you "fit in".

    If you have any other questions then please feel free to page me direct.


  4. First you will need to clear it with your TA OC.

    the Fact you have 14 years experience will help you with personal knowledge and help you as an instructor (Subject Knowledge).

    'What you get out being an AI' Why do you want to join?

    And don't get peed off, if you have to some courses, they are to ACFise your knowledge, meet others starting off, and make you familiar with the ACF 'rules'.

  6. Your message didn't mention you were leaving ;-)

    The hard slog in the ACF is the trg evenings, where you instruct the cadets in the training they need to progress.

    If you can smile through that, you have cracked it, and will enjoy being in the ACF.

    Make contact with the local Detachment, and take it from there.
  7. I'm just in the process of transferring from the TA as an officer to the ACF.

    I've been really impressed by the enthusiasm and generally helpful attitude of the adult instructors that I've met so far - I'm being "mentored" by a Det Comd and am finding the whole experience really satisfying.

    Yes, it is like some parallel universe to the TA, but that's not such a bad thing..
  8. the best way you can find out what its like to be an ai is to turn up to a detachment one evening and ask questions to other ai's in your area as each area differs. as a reg at the mo i can tell you that your years in the regs & ta will help alot in all the training and provide a much needed experiance that a few areas need in there ranks.