Cadet Forces study demonstrates social benefits

06 October 2017

East Belfast MP Gavin Robinson has highlighted the results of an independent report, compiled by the University of Northampton that found Cadet Forces offer a range of benefits to the young people who join them and to the wider community.

Gavin Robinson MP

Spokesman on Justice, Home Affairs and Human Rights.

Gavin Robinson

Some of the report’s findings include:

  • The social impact of Cadet Forces is vastly greater than the annual cost of the cadet programme to the defence budget.
  • Young people that have been excluded from school who join cadets are more likely to improve their attendance and behaviour.
  • Cadet Forces have a significant impact on making communities more inclusive by enabling people to overcome disadvantages in a way school does not.
  • Cadet Forces improve skills of communication, confidence and leadership which underpin the social impact seen and are valued by parents, educational organisations and employers.


Gavin Robinson is a member of the House of Commons Defence Select Committee and he welcomed the publication of the report saying “Many of us will have intuitively known the benefits provided by our Cadet Forces, but this report is hugely significant in that it specifies and quantifies those benefits.


The impacts on education, employment and social mobility are all outcomes that government often strives to achieve through a range of other initiatives. However, here we can see those benefits coming from the Cadet Forces and notably in a way which is very cost effective.


Concluding, he added, “Whilst launching this report the Defence Secretary announced the creation of new cadet units under the Cadet Expansion Programme. I would encourage young people and parents to explore the opportunities that exist locally with Cadet Forces units here in Northern Ireland.”



The full report from the University of Northampton can be found here:

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