January 21, 2016 - As EAA approaches the 25th anniversary of EAA’s Young Eagles program, we can celebrate the success it has been for nearly 2 million young people. One of the biggest reasons for this success is by volunteers making the flight experience a positive, memorable one.
Continuing that positive legacy means maintaining EAA’s high standards that have been part of the organization since Paul Poberezny founded it 63 years ago. Last week, Young Eagles volunteers were sent information regarding some administrative changes that keep EAA in step with best practices that are common in youth education and recreation programs throughout the nation, ranging from scout programs to youth sports leagues.
The new Youth Protection Program, which was first introduced as a concept in newsletters during 2015 to Young Eagles chapter coordinators and pilots, as well as at AirVenture 2015, will involve many EAA volunteers who work with young people. It will include online best-practices training and a basic background check to create the safest environment possible for young people in our programs and to protect our volunteers.
This training is available to all EAA volunteers who work with youth and Young Eagles pilots, chapter coordinators, and field representatives, free of charge, at www.eaa.org/youthprotection. We encourage you to participate early, as we will require that all participants in EAA and EAA chapter activities that serve youth to have successfully completed the training by May 1, 2016. After that date, EAA and chapter programs for youth will require full compliance with the training and background checks.
If you’re wondering whether your volunteer activities should comply with the training and background check, review the Frequently Asked Questions sheet at the website mentioned above. In the first few days of access to this website, nearly 1,000 EAA volunteers have already completed the training and background check process, and we appreciate their prompt action.
The company working with EAA in this process, AmericanChecked, is among the leaders in the industry and works with many colleges, school districts, and governmental agencies. A top priority of the exhaustive process to select the right company to work with EAA and its volunteers was the safety and security of any data collected. More information on that is available on the FAQ webpage, and we welcome questions and suggestions at any time at firstname.lastname@example.org.
EAA’s programs have earned an outstanding reputation because of the volunteers and our organization. We aim to maintain that reputation and instill the youth protection guidelines and culture that parents and guardians seek in all programs for their kids.