acf Bame Conference 2019

Major Jon Barkat (top right), Colonel Clint Riley (top left)

A warm welcome to the first ACF BAME conference. Colonel Clint Riley (BAME Network Champion) and Major Jon Barkat (Network Chairman), welcomes delegates to the first Army Cadet Force BAME Conference. We kick off the conference with, why do we have a BAME network within the ACF. Major Barkat shares his experiences and how the network started.

Captain Steven Henry

Army BAME Network Co-Chairman, explains the importance of the network within the Army.

The aims of the network is to Inform, Support and Empower. Captain Henry explains how to establish communications to create a network of support within the ACF. Delegates discuss some of the issues that BAME Cadets and Adult Volunteers (CFAV's) face with the ACF.

  • cultural
  • religious
  • language
  • climatic
  • isolation/loneliness

We get a good insight to what can be done better to help support cadets and CFAV and how we can develop and culture of understanding with active engagement and asking questions.

Armed Forces Diversity Engagement Team share their lived experiences
"Lived experience"

CPO Ann Miller-McCaffrey

Explains the true experiences but focus' on the positive support that the armed services' have provided. CPO Miller-McCaffery shares an insightful video which explains the opportunities and career development, providing an inclusive and diverse Armed Forces. The video shown various case studies of the types of opportunities created especially with career development, which really is providing an inclusive and diverse Armed forces. Some repeated comments was that actually the values and standards of the Army, matches those values and standards of most faiths.

Lt Colonel Sulle Alhaji

Gives an honest account of his first experiences within the Army, a scary 6 months to start of with that's for sure! What gave him strength and encouragement to stay was the British Army's values and standards and the established annual training that promoted equality and diversity. Through education and communication there is a positive change.

Lieutenant Colonel Ren Kapur MBE - CEO & Founder X-Forces Enterprise

" I was not meant to be here speaking to you today, but I am, if I can do it, so can you. It's about giving people a handrail " .

From running away at a young age, to becoming an entrepreneur and role model. Lt Colonel Ren Kapur MBE shared her experience of growing up through adversity, telling us a heartbreaking story as teenager through to young adulthood. Determined to turn her life around and help other's, she had defied all odds to become one of the most inspirational entrepreneurs in the UK. As founder and CEO of X-Forces Enterprise, Lt Col Ren shows us some of the success stories of the support that have been given to veterans and young people over the past 5 years. Now it's time to support cadets and role models, with business employment, self-employment with support and providing life skills to get off to a good start and throughout.

Captain Harmeet Nijjar- The ACF and Beyond

A similar theme of growing up with some barriers along the way, Captain Nijjar explains how the Army Cadet Force has helped him to achieve his dream job as an Army Air Corps apache pilot. After completing 3 years as a cadet, he went onto volunteer whilst studying at Sandhurt. An inspirational story and role model to young people.

Discussion task, sharing experiences and views and going forward to educate, inform and support.

Delegates were split into groups to discuss current challenges within the ACF and how they can be improved. Some great idea's to help us move forward which will improve the cadet experience and Adult Volunteer career.

Group discussions

Conclusion to the group discussions, what are the Network's next steps?

Education, Collaboration, Communication and Support.

Useful contacts @ACFStepChange - @ACFColCadets @renkapur @OfficialXforces

Here's to the very first ACF BAME Conference. #ACFStepChange #ACFBAMEConf19
Created By
Kate Knight