A fun welcome to the Top End

The 1st Combat Engineer Regiment (1CER) in Darwin held a family day on February 11 to welcome those who are new to the area, and to showcase the unit’s capability.

CAPTION: Children of soldiers of the 1st Combat Engineer Regiment make bubbles during the regiment’s family day.

Commanding Officer 1CER Lieutenant Colonel Samuel Padman said the focus for the activity was the development of the regiment’s people and capability.

“We chose to focus on two elements for this family day: promotion and awareness of support agencies, and the ability for families and children to interact with some of the regiment’s main equipment,” Lieutenant Colonel Padman said.

“This is what being part of this organisation is: meeting new people, bringing our families and friends together so that we remain connected in the communities in which we serve.”

A water slide, face painting, balloon twisting, slushie machines, popcorn and fairy floss kept the young children busy while the technical engineer equipment piqued the interest of many attendees.

The regiment was creative in showcasing some of the capability used in training and operations. In one activity, mine labs were turned into lolly finders.

Families were able to take a ride in protected mobility vehicles and armoured personnel carriers, providing an opportunity for family members to understand what mums, dads and other relatives who are members of the regiment do at work each day.

The 1CER recon team had a stand to test how well attendees could judge distance, and demonstrated their drones.

Engineer Support Squadron demonstrated its combat rescue capability, while the plant troop exhibited its vast array of heavy equipment.

Executive Officer Major Stephen Lomas said the coordination of such an event was rewarding.

“This was an extremely successful activity and afforded the 1CER family, old and new, the opportunity to understand our serving members’ roles and responsibilities,” Major Lomas said.

“It also provided an opportunity to display our appreciation for the continued support of our families, friends and support agencies.”

Fourteen support agencies were represented at the event, including Defence Community Organisation.

The regiment will host another family day later this year.

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