Could we offer our own gliding bursary? (liability etc?)

It’s possible that we may have found a sponsor willing to fund some civvy gliding for one of our cadets, the idea being that there would be an application and awarding process conducted with the help the local gliding club.
I foresee two problems when we put this idea to Wing. (1) Not allowed, because its not VGS and (2) not allowed because it might embarrass RAFAC who offer so few flying opportunities themselves - but dressed up as some other reason.
But the question really is whether it needs be anything to do with Wing (or higher) at all? If our CivCom have raised funds, why shouldnt we offer such a bursary? The Squadron would not recommend any specific gliding school, nor be involved in transporting the cadet, nor would it be done on squadron time. It would be a matter of (effectively) handing the cash to the parent in order that they make their own choice of flying school and do their own due dilligence.
Does it differ from (random example) someone awarding a cadet £250 and saying “go buy yourself a bicycle” - would RAFAC be responsible if that bicycle was unroadworthy and the cadet was injured?
Anyone know of anywhere where this has been done, or tried and failed?

The use of any civilian gliding (or flying) opportunities for cadets is banned at HQ level. Your wing are just reinforcing RAFAC policy.

If you go ahead with it and anyone further up the chain finds out (and they probably will), you’re likely to be swimming in thick, smelly brown stuff.

I don’t see that this would be different from any other flying or gliding scholarships, which we often encourage cadets to apply for. As long as the application process and delivery are truly independent of RAFAC then you’re just letting cadets know about an external opportunity.


I think the only issue would be if the civ com award the scholarship. As it won’t be a RAFAC activity it could be outside their remit as a charity and/or could blur the lines between RAFAC activity and non RAFAC activity
If an unrelated charity were to offer a scholarship, only open to cadets to apply for, then that’s all hunky dory


My reaction was the same as @Farmerdan’s before I even scrolled down:

Why does the money even have to touch the Sqn account?

Or, if direct payment isn’t feasible or there are multiple sponsors (or perhaps they want to record it as a charitable donation on the accounts…), an independent charity with its own, unrelated committee and account. Sponsor chairs and invites “like minded individuals with experience providing charitable services to a youth group operating in the relevant sector” to sit on it.


The big problem is putting it to wing who don’t have the decision making powers & would only be able to refer upwards anyway.

If you are going to ask best to go through to RC direct? Might be worth using the civ com chain going to Region chair rather than through the blue side.

The squadron charity is independent of the RAFAC and can surely give grants as its trustees see fit just as with any other charity, I would think. I don’t believe the civcom are bound by ACTOs, ACPs etc either, just the charity’s constitution.

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This ends up something like this.

The movement of Squadron CWCs bank accounts leads to in effect Wing CWC control which stops this sort of thing happening, the Squadron and CWC lose control ultimately their own funds. So no bursary funded by the CWC.

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Any charity has to use its money in a way that furthers it’s aims. E.g. Oxfam can’t start awarding flying scholarships to scouts, a charity set up to get more white working class boys into higher education can’t start funding black girls through sixth-form college.

The squadron committee, as a charity will have its constitution and that’s what would determine whether it can fund flying scholarships outside of cadets

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And, if the Wing CWC refuses to release such funds because the organisation (RAFAC) refuse to recognise non-RAF training organisations, then what happens, do the lawyers start to rub their hand together?

Yes, indeed, hence my last sentence. If the only question on whether it is appropriate to give funds or not is if a RAFAC ACTO allows it, then in my eyes it would be technically permissible (although probably going to cause trouble with the CoC regardless of legality).

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It’ll absolutely cause trouble with the CoC.

Let’s be honest, if a request is made with the words ‘external gliding in’ there is a 99.99999% chance of it being a blanket no without any further reading. Just won’t happen.

Empire building unfortunately. Whilst the glider pilot taking the cadet up may be BGA licenced with 10,000+ launches, because they’re not wearing a green suit it’s computer says no.

I don’t think there’d be any issues at all with continuing to signpost to gliding clubs, and the scholarships already there but to fund it as a Squadron is, unfortunately, just asking for trouble. Not real trouble, it’ll just be nonsense by people who aren’t trusted by their own CoC to understand what the risk is, but trouble nonetheless. It’s arguably not their fault at WSO etc level.

Were it me I would stick to just supporting cadets outside endeavours with signposting, selfishly it’s just not a level of hassle I could be bothered to deal with!

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But as I said up thread, who has control over the money the Squadron CWC or the Wing CWC who are supposed to be ‘independent’?

Totally get that. But the poster really is asking if there will be trouble from it.

Sadly the answer is almost certainly a yes, regardless of whether it is technically allowed.

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Maybe if a group of CWCs set up an independent charity in association with a BGA gliding club, who offered a bursary, and they fund raised for that charity much as the RAFAC support RAFA/RAFCT or the British Legion etc.

It absolutely isn’t a WSO level issue and I’m sure you’ll find plenty of WAvnOs who would love to have this as an option. It isn’t even a RAvnO problem; it is purely an assurance issue that HQAC and 2FTS simply will not allow it.

I’ve done this to death locally, and understand the arguments for, and don’t necessarily agree with all the arguments against… But sadly by funding via civ-com you will cause a world of pain for yourself and your wing staff…

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But exists as per its constitution to support RAFAC activity

Edit: darn it, I wrote this a lot earlier but didn’t hit confirm…

Is that what it actually says? Looking at the template one on SharePoint there doesn’t seem to even be a mention of aviation in the aims(!)

For those saying that RAFAC unit controlled funds can’t be used for flying or gliding outside 2FTS oversight of that activity, please explain the Mike Cross Scholarship which provides funds to allow cadets to fund their own AT or flying activities. The principle proposed here is the same.


What would happen if a gliding club run by the RAF GSA offered a bursury?

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