By Sam MacDonald
Courtesy of the Sylvan Lake News
A Sylvan Lake cadet and volunteer has received some serious recognition for his efforts to keep himself busy, and contribute to the betterment of the communities in which he works. Carter Brouilette was presented the Silver Duke of Edinburgh Award by the Lieutenant Governor of Alberta, Lois E. Mitchell.
Brouilette was officially given the award at the official Duke of Edinburgh ceremony last month in Edmonton.
“It felt good to receive the award – and it felt like I had something to strive for. (I have) the silver now, and if I work for it, I could have the gold, soon enough.”
Brouilette noted that he put many long hours into getting the award, but, “For me, it didn’t feel like a lot of work to do. (It felt) more just like a lot of time spent doing things I enjoyed, for other people.”
Brouilette, 15, is a Sylvan Laker attending Ecole Secondarie Notre Dame High School in Grade 10. Brouilette participates in the school’s concert band, and is a member of the 64 Squadron Ponoka Air Cadets.
Brouilette balances a number of responsibilities in his daily life, keeping himself busy working on the squadron’s drill team and playing in the squadron’s band as a drummer. Brouilette is a regular volunteer with the Sylvan Lake branch of the Royal Canadian Legion.
In addition to his volunteer work with his squadron and the Sylvan Lake Legion, Brouilette also volunteers at the Legion branches in Ponoka and Lacombe. He noted the specific duties that his volunteering entails can vary from instructing and leading his squadron’s band, to an assortment of odd jobs that Legion members may need assistance with, including matters as prestigious as Remembrance Day ceremonies or as simple as basic cleanup jobs.
“Through cadets, I spend a lot of time working with other kids my age, as well as instructing younger cadets,” wrote Brouilette in a biography he wrote when applying for the award. “Cadets has helped me see where I want to go in life and so after high school, I hope to attend the Royal Military College in Kingston, Ontario.”
Brouilette stated that his squadron does a great deal of activities that count towards the award, and that, “We have an amazing group leader (with) our squadron, (who) really helps us get these awards – that is why my squadron had three people at this ceremony.”
He added, “It was amazing to meet the Lieutenant Governor. She’s very personable, and it’s not something many people have the chance to do.”
The Duke of Edinburgh Award is given to recipients in 144 countries, and was established in Alberta four decades ago. The award is described as a non-competitive youth development platform that helps youth cultivate self-awareness, confidence, skills and experience in life, to further growth as active responsible citizens.