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“First Impressions Matter” by SGT(NPCC) Venisha and SGT(NPCC) Sumitra
The Beginning of a New Face
Students rushed down the hallways as soon as the bell chimed. Student representatives from various Co-Curricular Activities (CCA) huddled around these students, showcasing the highlights of their CCA to these secondary one students. Amongst them were Kuo Chuan’s very own Girl guides, netball team, drama club , dance club and last but not least, National Police Cadet Corps (NPCC). It was definitely not easy communicating with the Secondary One students as they overwhelmed us with an avalanche of questions and the addition of shouting and screaming generated by other students in the background certainly made it a chore to be heard. This was how our 2017 open house day turned out to be.
This year’s Orientation was a memorable and an eventful one as my cadet leaders have put in loads of hard work and effort into planning the display and orientation of the NPCC booth. The booth included a 5 inch LED screen that had been set up in the canteen which served the purpose of portraying the various activities that NPCC cadets go through every year. The booth also featured a CSI mock-up and a much simpler version of a revolver. These features were included to increase the awareness of the students on the various events and activities that NPCC has to offer. In addition, a pair of uniforms, typically worn by the Guard of Honour contingents on parades and ceremonies, was borrowed from NPCC HQ. On that day, they were proudly donned on by two of our cadet leaders. Upon witnessing the smart uniforms that our unit was wearing, several students flocked to our booth, curious about how NPCC was like. Our fellow squad mates, eager and excited to entertain the students, elaborated on their experiences and what they have learnt from the various events that we as a squad partook in. We learnt to be more outgoing and feel that NPCC is a platform for us to forge new friendships, especially through activities such as the Secondary 2 Adventure Training Camp, 1 star Kayaking Course and Cadet Leader Course. My squad mates then proceeded to show them a video explaining the character traits and lessons on can take home from NPCC, which made them more intrigued. One of the students even exclaimed upon witnessing the video, “Wow! I have to join this CCA. It looks fun indeed!” After hearing this, my squad mate, who was by the student’s side, gave thumbs up at us. This student, along with many other ones, convinced us that things were bound to go well this year and left a positive spirit in all of us.
With the inter-unit games that are going to be hosted by our school round the corner, our unit rehearsed for the actual event through a dry-run session. Concurrently, we thought it would be a great opportunity for the Secondary Ones to participate in it and have a feel of the events NPCC organizes to strengthen the bond between NPCC cadets from various schools. This session also allowed for the introduction of the seniors to the Secondary Ones. While some of them were affirmative about joining the corps, there were still some who needed time. Seniors took the chance to explain about NPCC during the small breaks that they were included between games. Though we were exhausted from the physical activities involved in the games, we were relieved to have put a smile on the Secondary Ones’ faces at the end of the session. A student even came up to me and said, “NPCC has so far been much better than I thought. The seniors were very welcoming and friendly!” When my squad mates heard his statement, though exhausted, they managed to put a vibrant smile on their faces.
KCPSS NPCC had its first Precision Drill performance in January. Cadets from Secondary 2,3 and 4 squads came volunteered to participate in this event. It was a first for our unit as it was the very first time that we adapted to the new stuns and movements in Precision Drill compared to the Fancy Rifle Drill that we had all along been performing with.
Much time and effort were put into the training by the Precision Drill Squad over the holidays as they worked towards the goal of having a successful and spectacular performance on campfire night. Along the way, many of them struggled as they were learning a completely new performance-type. They had to adapt to change and catch up within a short period of time. Eventually, they managed to ace the movements and put up an awe-inspiring performance for the crowd.
During the lego competition organised by Whitley Sec, cadets had to construct unique models with the given Lego set,with a theme related to crime. There was a time limit and teamwork, communication and cooperation between the cadets were key components of this competition. Through this experience, the cadets from both Secondary 1 and 2 Squad bonded with each other and this allowed them to have a meaningful experience with each other.
This competition not only promotes teamwork between the cadets but also provides a platform for cadets to hone their creativity. Cadets were given lego pieces to construct a crime-related object, and had ample opportunity to let their imagination run wild as they constructed objects based on their imagination and creativity. These skills will be important for the cadets as they learn to think out of the box and make do with whatever they have in future. It is something that cannot be picked up in classroom hence making this competition not only engaging but also beneficial.
In August, KCP NPCC carried out a Values-in-Action programme at ECONS Wellness Home in Bishan. Obtaining the badge was secondary, as our main goal was to focus on spreading awareness of recent scams that have been spreading around from foreign countries as well as locally. These scams are targeted at mostly the elderly, as scammers see them as an easy target. However, upon knowing about such scams, KCP NPCC cadets from Secondary 2 and 3 created posters regarding such scams, and how they can be prevented. With the help of the teacher officers, we managed to get the posters printed and ready to be distributed.
On the day of the programme, our cadets set out to the Jasmine Home above the ECONS centre to distribute these posters. Split into various groups, the aim was to spread awareness of such scams to the elderly and to alert them on what they should do. It was no doubt exhausting for our cadets but they managed to gain skills such as camaraderie and teamwork, by working together as individual groups and spreading the message.
On the 27th of August 2016, 5 of our very own NPCC cadets took part in the annual Cooking Competition held by Pierce Secondary School. Other schools from Area 4 also took part in this competition.
In order to receive more ingredients, the cadets had to participate in a series of games that would enable them to “earn” more ingredients that could potentially boost the appearance and taste of their dishes. The cadets had smiles etched onto their faces as they worked hard to receive the additional ingredients, whilst having fun.
The cadets did not come in top 3, but they enjoyed themselves during the process of the activity, which was most important.
On the 8th of August 2016, KCPSS celebrated Singapore’s 51st birthday. On that very day, the annual National Day Parade was carried out in Kuo Chuan to commemorate Singapore’s independence since 1965. Some of the Secondary 3s and 2s were in the NPCC Contingent whilst SSGT Tony Evans was the Contingent Commander. Together as a contingent, NPCC displayed its precise movements while marching proudly into the parade grounds. To the cadets that made the contingent, it was definitely a moment worth remembering as they were given the opportunity to represent their Uniform Group in the school’s National Day Parade. The other Uniformed Groups that formed the parade were: Boys’ and Girls’ Brigade, Girl Guides and the National Civil Defence Cadet Corps.
SSGT Lee Zie Sheng and SSGT Timothy Tay were given the roles as the flag bearers during the parade. They were in charge of carrying the Singapore flag. Overall, the parade went through smoothly was a huge success.
For the ceremony component, our very own Precision Drill Squad, which included SSGT Tony, Jerrell, Austin, Icarus and Raymond performed in front of close to a thousand spectators that filled the school hall with roars and cheers. It was no easy feat as hours and hours of training had to planned to enable the movements to be precise and uniform.During the process of rehearsing, the squad members were tirelessly practicing and perfecting their movements, despite numerous failed attempts to execute the move. Many of them perservered and refused to throw in the towel as they instilled in themselves a never-say-die attitude. This was what kept them going.
Eventually, they managed to put up a spectacular performance to the audience, and made KCP NPCC proud as they precisely executed every move. It was a first for our unit to adopt the Precision Drills as we had always trained on Fancy Rifle Drills. However, the squad still managed to put up a wonderful performance that dazzled the spectators. Good job!
Our Area 4 Secondary 2 and 3 Cadets, attended the Adventure Training Camp(ATC) and Survival Training Camp(STC) from 5 August to 7 August respectively. This camp was organised by Area 4 Instructors and was aimed at sharpening the survival and leadership skills of our cadets. Additionally, it allowed cadets to take initiative and bond with cadets from other schools as well. This year, the theme of the camp was Greek gods. There were a together of 6 groups, Zeus, Poseidon, Apollo, Artemis, Nike and Ares. Each group consists of cadets from different schools that were carefully distributed to increase the probability of the cadets seeing new faces.
During the camps, the area’s Secondary 2 cadets had the opportunity to kayak, which was one of the key highlights of ATC. On the other side of Camp Resilience however, the area’s Secondary 3 cadets were tasked to participate in the High Elements Course, which was set up to allow cadets to overcome their fear of heights and to challenge the cadets’ mental and physical capacity.
The campfire was held on the last night to signify the end of the camp. Cadets sang campfire songs and the 6 groups performed in front of the camp. It was an awe-inspiring experience for everyone on the campfire pit as both cadets and instructors sang their hearts out to mark the soon-to-end camp.
By the end of the camp, Joyce and Venisha made us proud by receiving the Best Female Camper Award. It was also the second time that Joyce received the award, which made our unit proud. The camp was tiring but at the same time was filled with loads of excitement and adventures. The cadets were had mixed emotions as they left the campsite which had been their home for the past few days.