Local cadet ready to sail on Young Endeavour

Dhanvin Menon with family (below) and sub-Branch members at Penrith RSL Club.  Photos by Noel Rowsell

The City of Penrith RSL Club Ltd and City of Penrith RSL sub-Branch have agreed to jointly fund a Scholarship in the Young Endeavour Youth Scheme for a cadet at Training Ship (TS) Nepean.

This year’s scholarship nominees were interviewed by a panel including Frank Portelli (Chairman Penrith RSL Ltd, Frank Syaranamual (President, Penrith Naval Association) and Ron Broome (former Merchant Marine), who awarded the scholarship to Australian Naval Cadet (ANC) Dhanvin Menon (Caddens).

Dhanvin is in Year 10 at Wollemi College, Werrington and has been a cadet for the past 2 years.

He expressed his gratitude to both the RSL and sub-Branch for the opportunity to sail on Young Endeavour.

TS Nepean CO LEUT Neil Currie said “It is awesome the amount of support we receive from the Club and sub-Branch and it enhances what we (TS Nepean) can achieve to deliver the program.”

“The Cadets support the sub-Branch in all of our services and this is our way to both return and acknowledge their ongoing support,” said sub-Branch Vice President Peter Ward.

To qualify for this year’s Scholarship, Dhanvin was required to research an Australian recipient of the Victoria Cross, from either the RAAF or Australian Army, then make a 15-minute presentation to the RSL and sub-Branch Board members.

Following his success in securing the Scholarship, Dhanvin and 23 crewmates will set sail from Sydney on 5th December, on a return voyage down the NSW east coast to Eden, arriving back in Sydney on 15th December.

The Young Endeavour Youth Scheme provides young Australians with a unique, challenging and inspirational experience at sea, aboard the national Sail Training Ship Young Endeavour, which is a two-masted, square-rigged sailing ship, specially designed and purpose-built to offer development programs for young Australians at sea.

As a member of the 24-strong youth crew, each participant will be challenged to sail the tall ship during an eleven day adventure at sea, usually departing from ports on the eastern or southern coasts of Australia. In learning how to sail the ship they are learning how to work together as a team, and to recognise and appreciate the strengths of a diverse group of individuals. They are supported by our specially trained Royal Australian Navy staff crew and encouraged to step out of their comfort zones, becoming more self-aware and building the confidence to actively contribute and to take
on leadership roles amongst their peers.

More information on the Young Endeavour experience can be found at https://youngendeavour.gov.au

The Australian Navy Cadets (ANC) is Australia’s premier youth development organisation, which is supported and sponsored by the Royal Australian Navy.

Training Ship (TS) Nepean is located at the Defence Establishment Orchard Hills (DEOH), The Northern Road, Orchard Hills.

“We parade every Saturday during the school term from 0830-1600,” said Commanding Officer LEUT ANC Neil Currie. “The unit compliment is currently 43 cadets, with 5 staff who are all volunteers who give up their time to support the program.

Young people aged between those turning 13 in the year they join until 17 are eligible to join the ANC.

TS Nepean is currently recruiting for next year and the unit will be conducting a recruit intake on Saturday 17th February 2024 at TS Nepean.

Any enquiries can be directed to the Commanding Officer LEUT ANC Neil Currie at TSNepean@navycadets.gov.au. Applications and further information about Navy Cadets can be accessed on the website http://www.cadetnet.gov.au

Navy cadets conduct training in but not limited to: sailing, powerboating, STEM – robotics, drones, drill, skill at arms, marching, drumming, cooking, first Aid, physical training, conduct weekend camps and also conduct week long activities during school holidays.

#Dhanvin’s subject was Warrant Officer Keith Payne VC AM, who was awarded for his actions during the Vietnam War. Aged 90, Payne is the last living Australian recipient of the original Imperial Victoria Cross. He received his VC from Queen Elizabeth ll aboard the Royal Yacht Britannia in Brisbane on 13th April, 1970.