OTC assistance to ACF camps

Discussion in 'OTC and ACF' started by mongoose9, Jun 6, 2005.

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  1. Request for Info. Do Ocdts find helping the ACF camps rewarding and also do the ACF find them helpful. Any thoughts?
     
  2. Three summers of that malarkey and I never want to be within 50 yds of another ACF "Officer".

    Total waste of time, shame it took me so long to realise it!

    Do UOTC / TA Courses instead.
     
  3. I think in the past i have found ACF camps extremely rewarding. Of course it can depend on the ACF, and the kids. I can totally understand the comment about ACF officers, and yes, occasionally thay are extremely underqualified, which is the perfect opportunity for the OTC to help out. Many a time has arisen when they have realised that the OCdts would be much better off teaching the kids fieldcraft, section attacks, patrolling, etc, and so have just left them to do it, while the ACF officers juch watch, look important and brew up. The ACFs have always shown enormous appreciation for the aid from OTCs, not just in the field, but admin, adventurous training etc. And, of course, you have to bear in mind that on ACF camps, OCdts get paid alot more, for doing an awful lot less than in the OTC!
     
  4. The OTC aren't really a great deal of help on ACF camps.

    They're not qualified to instruct on the weapons we use, they don't understand the way WE do OUR fieldcraft and they generally don't have the experience of working with young kids.

    What they are good at is livening up the Officers mess!

    I'm not having a dig or saying their crap or anythign like that...they just kinda get thrown at you and told they can help. If they were given only a few days before camp starts just to get familiar with the system, they'd be a hellavu lot more useful, and probably enjoy camp more.

    And I KNOW ACF officers can be crap...almost all of my companies officers are rubbish, because they don't want to get involved. And most of them are bloody old too. I think I'm the only person under thirty in the officers mess
     
  5. I agree with Nikolas on this one. You do get some very enthusiastic and capable OTC Officer Cadets who come and assist at ACF annual camp but the red-tape of the system means, sadly, they can not be used to their full potential.
     
  6. Also remember, OTC people are still under training themselves ;-)
    So your going to get the good and bad.
     
  7. what everyone here seems to have missed is that quite often before the Ocdts become members of an OTC unit, they have quite often been a member of another cadet organisation beforehand. I know of many who had previously been in the ACF themselves and a fair few more, myself included who have been in the ATC. So quite often the Ocdts you are writing off as having no experience with teenagers in the past, may perhaps have a wealth of experience just waiting to be gleaned from!
     
  8. woopert

    woopert LE Moderator

    What I will say is that any OCdt assisting the ACF will probably learn more about how to persuade and lead than any amount of time at Sandhurst will teach. As a movement the ACF lets in kids that for many reasons would never get into the army (mostly for medical reasons such as a slight disability, hard of hearing, partially sighted etc) and that proves a challenge. The other thing is that the kids aren't there because they are paid or because they have to be, so they challenge more, point out your mistakes more, and engage with you more. From the point of view of commanding other Ocdts at OTC and then Sandhurst, it's a shock when faced with real soldiers who do question what you are doing, and that's exactly what you get from the kids. It develops a different aspect of your leadership skills.

    As for the officers...... some are committed and see themselves as there for a purpose, many are ex-rankers who did 3 years, came out as a L/Cpl and behave like Idi Armin. Ignore them, I always did. They like to strut around impressing each other, but not suprisingly, no-one else. The NCO's though are often hard working and under-appreciated for what they do for these kids, especially in the most deprived areas.
     
  9. I'd disagree with that. Firstly, as a member of the ACF and as someone who was with Birmingham OTC for a very short while, the difference of standards is astounding. In the ACF, testing and training is (mostly, there are always exceptions) done to the same standard. At the OTC, I was shocked by the lack of skills of the JUOs and Officers. The officer teaching map and Compass didn't know what he was doing, and I ended up helping him out (in my first night there). The OTC we had at camp a few eyars ago who have stayed on as instructors, knew nothing and I mean NOTHING. HOw they managed to pass anything at OTC i have no idea. And I don't think any had been in the ACF in the apst. Some had been in the CCF, but they're pretty crap also.

    Last year we had an excellent 2nd Lt and first year OCdt with us in the Senior cadet company, who helped me out no end with fieldcraft and the like. They'd done ambushes to the point where they were so good at it, they could do it with their eyes closed. But they were definitly the exception to the rule. I know some 16 yr old cadets who could run circles around the OCdts we've had.
     
  10. Having served in both during my time, and having taken a lot away from both I'd say it depends who shows up! (Sound familiar?)

    First off, the ACF isn't the Army, or even the OTC. However O/Cdts whether they like it or not, are soliders - so will do what they're told. And they can get a lot out of assisting ACF camps, especially switched on ones who've been in for more than 6 months.

    There is an advantage to the ACF as well, I feel. Although that standard varies hugely depending on the CO, the PSIs etc., O/Cdts are taught to soldier as opposed to doing fieldcraft, and map and compass and all the other subject areas that the ACF break it down into.

    For those who are committed, enthusiastic and well lead this will turn out excellent o/cdts. The other added advantage is that they are being trained with a view to commissioning, so they are taught to have high personnal standards and lead my example. Ok they aren't trained to be instructors, but the good ones will pick it up fairly quickly.

    From my own (limited) experience of cadets they were always interested to be working with TA or regular soldiers/officers (especially when said pers rocked up with a collection of green fleet, radios and CWS for them to play with) and that they gain from it.

    The problem (and I speak, on this point entirely from my own experience) when the o/cdts are being 'harrased' for want of a better word by the useless higher echelons of whichever county they are attached, and constantly being told to 'behave' like an officer, and not to socialise with the Sgts etc. - frankly I found it quite insulting being told by an overweight non-entity with a crown on his chest how to behave like an officer, and I'm sure others would to.

    Finally, I don't agree with the earlier point about the GP. It is based on the SA80, the drills are the same (less gas stopages) except for using your right hand a lot more. If the individual concerned is competant with the SA80 then 10 minutes should be enough to be able to pass a WHT on the GP - although it is much more useful as a club than a rifle!
     
  11. Our lot (and the TA staff attatched too) were given two days training before the cadets arrived last year, consisting of lessons on the "red book", the GP and other such things (Much to my annoyance having worked with the acf for about 6 months at that time!)