Today, CAP handles 90 percent of inland search and rescue missions, with
approximately 75-100 lives saved each year. Our members are generally the first
on the scene transmitting satellite digital images of the damage within seconds
around the world and providing disaster relief and emergency services following
natural and man-made disasters, including such phenomena as 9/11, Hurricane
Katrina, Texas and Oklahoma wildfires, tornadoes in the south and central U.S.,
North Dakota flash flooding and the October 2006 earthquake in Hawaii, as well
as humanitarian missions along the U.S. and Mexican border.
In addition, CAP members are dedicated to counterdrug reconnaissance and to teaching a new generation about aerospace and its impact on our future. And our cadet programs ensure our youth receive some of the finest leadership training the nation has to offer.
Unlike our founding CAP fathers, many of whom flew their own airplanes and performed life-threatening missions without any formal training, our more than 55,000 members are now provided with top-notch, year-round professional development training opportunities and with aircraft equipped with the most advanced technologies available for search and rescue.
Indeed, Civil Air Patrol makes a huge impact each and every day, going above and beyond to make a profound difference in America's communities. As a vigilant CAP volunteer, you save lives and preserve liberty for all. Thank you for your service.
Maj Peter Cubano, CAP
Would you like to honor and serve America?
Do you want to prepare for your future while making new friends?
Then rise to the challenge of cadet membership in the U.S. Air Force Auxiliary, Civil Air Patrol.
The CAP Cadet Program is a year-round program where Cadets fly, learn to lead, hike, camp, get in shape, and push themselves to new limits. If you’re dreaming about a career in aviation, space, or the military, CAP’s Cadet Program is for you.
To become a cadet, you must be be at least 12 years old and not yet 19 years old. Cadets meet 2 hours per week and one Saturday per month, on average, and also have opportunities to attend leadership encampments, career academies, and other activities during the summer.
am pushing myself to be a better person.” Cadet Kristin Miller
“I made my first solo flight at a CAP encampment.” Astronaut Eric Boe
“I’ve learned discipline – something not stressed enough in today’s society.” Cadet Theresa Paredes
Thank you for supporting your child's interest in the Civil Air Patrol Cadet Program. CAP is a volunteer, non-profit organization that also serves as the civilian auxiliary to the U.S. Air Force. Our three missions are to develop youth through a cadet program, educate Americans on the importance of aviation and space, and perform live-saving humanitarian missions.
The program accepts new cadets who are at least 12 years old and not yet 19 years old. It is a year-round program with weekly meetings at a local CAP squadron and additional activities on weekends or during the summer.
CAP is not a military or boarding school, but a youth development program that incorporates aviation and military customs and courtesies. Through their experiences as CAP cadets, young people develop into responsible citizens and become tomorrow's aerospace leaders. The leadership skills, self-confidence, and discipline cadets gain through CAP prepares them to achieve whatever goals they set for themselves in life.
To fulfill its goal of developing young people into responsible citizens and aerospace leaders, the Cadet Program is developed around five program elements: Leadership, Character Development, Aerospace Education, Physical Fitness, and Activities. As cadets participate in these five elements, they advance through a series of achievements, earning honors and increased responsibilities
Though Civil Air Patrol is known for its flying missions, CAP adults members, known as Senior Members, do so much more than just fly. In fact less than a fifth of all CAP members are pilots or aircrew members. CAP adult members come from all walks of life. Some are doctors, nurses, paramedics, or other medical professionals. Others are lawyers, paralegals, accountants, computer programmers, and other business professionals and executives. Really just about any career or background can be useful to and found in the ranks of the CAP adult membership. CAP supports a variety of missions that require adults from all walks of life.In emergency services and operations CAP not only need aircrew members, but also ground team members to aid in the rescue of survivors or to assess damage after a disaster. CAP needs communications personnel to relay critical messages when there is limited or no telephone support. Administrative staff, financial managers, logistics and supply personnel are needed to document missions and get personnel critical supplies and equipment in the field that they need to conduct missions.
Though Civil Air Patrol is known for its flying
missions, CAP adults members, known as Senior Members, do so much more
than just fly. In fact less than a fifth of all CAP members are pilots or
aircrew members. CAP adult members come from all walks of life. Some are
doctors, nurses, paramedics, or other medical professionals. Others are
lawyers, paralegals, accountants, computer programmers, and other business
professionals and executives. Really just about any career or background can be
useful to and found in the ranks of the CAP adult membership. CAP supports a
variety of missions that require adults from all walks of life.
In emergency services and operations CAP not only need aircrew members, but also ground team members to aid in the rescue of survivors or to assess damage after a disaster. CAP needs communications personnel to relay critical messages when there is limited or no telephone support. Administrative staff, financial managers, logistics and supply personnel are needed to document missions and get personnel critical supplies and equipment in the field that they need to conduct missions.
CAP also needs adults to support the cadet program. CAP has over 23,000 cadets across the country that need mentors willing to help guide and support them. The cadet program provides young adults between the ages of 12 and 21 a well rounded program of leadership, aerospace education, physical fitness, and moral and ethical decision making. In today’s world we need good people who are willing to step up and help provide a healthy, drug-free environment to develop tomorrow’s leaders. Many former cadets have gone into the military, government jobs, or private sector employment where they can and do make a difference, and really excel. There are many military general officers that were once CAP cadets. Senators and congressman, CEOs and others credit their success to CAP and the adult members who mentored them.
CAP needs adults for its aerospace education program. In addition to educating our own members, CAP’s adult leaders provide training and resources to teachers who reach out to students of all ages across the country. Aviation and aerospace impacts the lives of Americans every day, and CAP works to ensure that citizens know how valuable aviation and aerospace is in our world.
This element is a self-paced study based on the Textbook Aerospace: The Journey of Flight. All senior members have the responsibility to read and become knowledgeable with the content of this text. Once members are ready to take the Yeager test, they can do so on-line within eService’s or using offline paper-based options. Members are encouraged to take the test on-line. Members completing any of the options will receive the Charles E. “Chuck” Yeager Aerospace Education Achievement Award and are authorized to wear the Yeager Award ribbon.
2. Aerospace Education Management Skills Development
This element involves the orientation and training of unit AEOs. The CAPP 215 specialty track, developed specifically for AE staff professional growth, is available on the CAP website. The specialty track consists of three phases: Technician; Senior; and Master. All three phases are evaluated by a written examination (available on-line) and by demonstrated performance. Achievement of the Technician rating in the Aerospace Education Officer specialty track authorizes the wearing of the AE badge.
A bronze star is added to the AE badge upon achievement of the Senior rating. A gold star replaces the bronze star after achievement of the Master rating. When the Master specialty track rating is earned, and the CAP member is an active aerospace education officer, as certified by the commander, the CAP member will be awarded the A. Scott Crossfield Award.
3. Aerospace Education Leadership Requirements
This element outlines the leadership required for the AE portion of the CAP mission. The term “leadership” applies to every CAP member and specifically to commanders and AE officers. Commanders at all levels should demonstrate support for the AE mission and staff each authorized AE position with individuals who conduct and support aerospace education in the unit. Region, wing, unit commanders and AE officers provide leadership and assistance to ensure an effective AE program.
4. Individual Aerospace Continuing Education
This element establishes the obligation for each senior member to create his/ her own individual continuing education program on aerospace topics. Every member has a personal obligation to sustain a level of aerospace knowledge that will ensure a strong professional organization. Reading professional magazines, journals, and books is a way to achieve this element. Unit AEOs can facilitate individual continuing aerospace education by conducting aerospace education programs including such things as hands-on activities, guest speakers, and field trips.
5. Aerospace Education Outreach
This element makes it the responsibility of all senior members, and not just unit AEOs, to promote aerospace education within CAP and in their communities. Visiting schools, talking with educators and school administrators, giving school presentations, writing newspaper articles and directing a unit hands-on activity are among those examples that exemplify the fulfillment of this element.
Aerospace education is also a major part of
the cadet program. Cadets study aerospace books and perform hands-on aerospace
activities in a group or by themselves. Cadets must complete formal aerospace
education requirements to progress through the various achievements of the cadet
program. Cadets must complete staff duty analyses, one of which is Aerospace
Education Officer, and serve as aerospace mentors to other cadets. CAPR 52-16,
Cadet Program Management, defines the cadet program and outlines the aerospace
Growing from its World War II experience, the Civil Air Patrol has continued to save lives and alleviate human suffering through a myriad of emergency-services and operational missions.
Search and Rescue
Perhaps best known for its search-and-rescue efforts, CAP flies more than 85 percent of all federal inland search-and-rescue missions directed by the Air Force Rescue Coordination Center at Tyndall Air Force Base, Fl. Outside the continental United States, CAP supports the Joint Rescue Coordination Centers in Alaska, Hawaii and Puerto Rico. Just how effective are the CAP missions? Approximately 75-100 people are saved each year by CAP members.
Another important service CAP performs is disaster-relief operations. CAP provides air and ground transportation and an extensive communications network. Volunteer members fly disaster-relief officials to remote locations and provide manpower and leadership to local, state and national disaster-relief organizations. CAP has formal agreements with many government and humanitarian relief agencies including the American Red Cross, Federal Emergency Management Agency, Federal Aviation Administration, National Transportation Safety Board and the U.S. Coast Guard.
CAP flies humanitarian missions, usually in support of the Red Cross-transporting time-sensitive medical materials including blood and human tissue, in situations where other means of transportation are not available.
Air Force Support
It's hardly surprising that CAP performs several missions in direct support of the U.S. Air Force. Specifically, CAP conducts light transport, communications support, and low-altitude route surveys. CAP also provides orientation flights for AFROTC cadets. Joint U.S. Air Force and CAP search-and-rescue exercises provide realistic training for missions.
CAP joined the "war on drugs" in 1986 when, pursuant to congressional authorization, CAP signed an agreement with the U.S. Air Force and U.S. Customs Service offering CAP resources to help stem the flow of drugs into and within the United States.