Being a Cadet

Young people aged 10-17 can join one of our Cadet units, which operate across England. Units meet once a week.

Life saving skills are at the heart of our Cadet programme. There is also the opportunity to use these first aid skills by supporting our adult volunteers at events.

Some Cadets work towards their Grand Prior's Award. As part of the Award, you'll be able to take part in a wide range of activities.

Many Cadets join St John Ambulance to gain relevant experience before pursuing a career as a paramedic or health care professional. With so many different activities to get involved with, there is something for everyone.

Some of these include:

  • learning first aid and volunteering at events
  • engaging in social action and helping your local community
  • learning about health and wellbeing
  • developing your confidence and communication skills through our Cadet leadership courses
  • becoming a Peer Educator and helping to teach others first aid
  • enjoying a wide range of adventurous activities on a residential summer camp.

Cadet development courses

As a Cadet, you'll be able to challenge yourself and take your skills to the next level with one of our Cadet development courses.

  1. Cadets practising bandaging

    Become a Cadet First Aider (age 13+)

    You can become a Cadet First Aider by completing our Operational Skills course. Alongside adult volunteers, you'll be able to put your first aid skills into practise at local and national events. For example, the London Marathon, Manchester Pride, music festivals, and sporting events.

  2. Cadet talking to member of public in ambulance

    Become a Peer Educator (age 14+)

    Build your confidence and develop your communication skills by becoming a Peer Educator. You'll be able to work with others to provide first aid training to people in your community. You'll also be encouraged to plan and lead your own training sessions.

  3. Cadet observer smiling

    Become a Leader (age 13+)

    Our leadership courses can help you develop your public speaking skills, and your ability to identify good leadership. You'll be able to set a great example to your fellow Cadets. You also might be able to take on more responsibility within your unit.

Cadet Awards

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Get involved

Find your nearest Youth unit and register your interest using the link below

The first step to becoming a Cadet is to find your nearest unit using our finder tool. To get started, reach out to a local leader to see if spaces are available and find out more about where and when the group meets.

How much does it cost?

All Badger setts and Cadet units charge a fixed annual subscription of £72 which can be paid annually or monthly.

The payment covers costs, such as

  • keeping young people safe
  • leadership courses (Cadets)
  • equipment, certificates, and badges.

There are sometimes extra costs for other events, such as camps and residential courses.

Subscriptions do not cover the cost of uniform

What should I wear?

Is there a waiting list?

Safeguarding - keeping young people safe

Safeguarding - keeping young people safe