Exciting and unique experiences for children affected by disabilities
The Bader Braves initiative offers support, friendship and unique experiences to children affected by limb loss or any other form of disability. We offer a range of exciting and challenging activities aimed at improving life skills, creating bonds and increasing confidence. Many of the activities are available to Braves and their families.
Young Aviators Days
A big part of Bader Braves is the Young Aviators Days which provide youngsters from 6-18 affected by limb deficiency and other disabilities with the opportunity of experiencing flight in a light aircraft. We continue to enlist the support of new airfields in different parts of the country so that we can offer this unique opportunity to more youngsters.
We organise diverse adventures and challenges for our Braves such as Adventure Weekends with the Calvert Trust at their wonderful venues in Exeter and Kielder, as well as Sailing, Go-Karting, Fishing and Canal Boat Trips.
2020 brings a new direction through our new involvement with Over The Wall, a major activity provider. This partnership gives us the opportunity to offer our Braves an increased range of Adventure Challenges throughout the year and across the British Isles.
The Bader Braves concept was created as a joint acknowledgement of Sir Douglas Bader’s honourary Chieftainship of a Canadian Indian Tribe and the bravery of children facing disabilities in their efforts to lead normal lives.
We know that Bader Braves, which combines Sir Douglas’s respect for the Native Canadian Indians, his pride in his Honourary Chieftainship and his love of children, would be a venture particularly close to his heart.
The Bader Braves initiative was launched on the 10th February 2010, at R.A.F. Museum, Hendon.
Sir Douglas Bader being honoured as “Chief Morning Bird” by the Kainai Indians
The Kainai, also known as the Blood or Kainaiwa, are one of three nations comprising the Blackfoot Confederacy. An honourary chieftainship of the tribe is a tremendous honour, limited to only 40 living people. Sir Douglas Bader, ‘Chief Morning Bird’ was extremely and justifiably proud to be honoured in this way..
(From: “This Week in Canadian History” (Oct. 3 – Oct 9, 1818 – 1998): ‘Edward, Prince of Wales (later King Edward VIII) was honoured with the name “Red Crow” when he became the first Kainai Chief at a ceremony in Lethbridge, Alberta. The Kainai (Blood Indians) of southern Alberta created the honorary chieftainship to recognise individuals who have contributed either to the Blood people or to humanity in general. Membership is limited to 40 living persons and the honour is highly prized. Among those who have been members are Douglas Bader (Morning Bird), Pierre Berton (Big Plume), and Pope John Paul II (Big Holy White Father).’
An important aspect of the Bader Braves initiative was the ‘tribe’ element. Children with disabilities can feel isolated, lonely and different and can gain in confidence by finding that they are not alone. This can be an equally positive experience for their parents and carers as is borne out by feedback from our Calvert Trust residential events particularly. Here Braves and their families or carers can spend a whole weekend with people in a similar situation. For them this is often one of the only times they’re truly able to relax in a social situation.
We have always envisaged the potential for a ‘circle of support’ where Braves might hold or take part in fund-raising or other events to benefit each other, reinforce contacts and strengthen bonds within the tribe.
Donate to The Bader Braves
The DOUGLAS BADER FOUNDATION has always relied almost entirely on fund-raising to survive and to continue to assist amputees and other disabled. We would be delighted to hear from anyone with ideas, fund-raising or otherwise, to support this venture.
You can be involved in improving the lives of these brave kids by giving a donation using the link below:
Giving children this opportunity provides self-belief, self-confidence, excitement and sews a seed of what they can do;
DBF Ambassador, Phil Packer MBE
To support the Douglas Bader Foundation and in particular the BADER BRAVES initiative, giving children with limb loss and other disabilities their first experience of flight in a light aircraft and the BADER BRAVES Adventure week-ends, fills me with immense pleasure and delight.
Giving children this opportunity provides self-belief, self-confidence, excitement and sews a seed of what they can do; I hope that those introduced to the Foundation will support this initiative and the aeronautical industry and pilots throughout the country will continue to be involved and assist to give more children this wonderful opportunity.