Shantel Childs is heading for a life all at sea.
The 19-year-old Whyalla girl aspires to a career in the Royal Australian Navy as a bosun’s mate or officer and wants to travel the world as a seafarer.
Shantel is bound for Sydney to participate in the Australian Navy Cadets National Sailing Competition at Easter with other cadets from units from across South Australia.
She and other cadets from TS Whyalla Australian Naval Cadets will travel to Adelaide to sail in Corsairs to compete in events and training while honing skills for the titles.
Shantel has been sailing for seven years and is a member of TS Whyalla based next to the Maritime Museum on the Port Augusta Road
“We do just about every water activity,” she said.
Shantel became interested in the military while watching a navy movie.
“It was really interesting and I later discovered that my poppa was in the air force and my uncle was in the army so I asked around and learned there was a naval cadet unit based in Whyalla,” she said.
“I went for a look and was fascinated at what I saw, so much so I joined and since then I have never looked back. I am doing a course at TAFE as a chef. If I don’t enter the navy as a chef, I would like to be a bosun’s mate or an officer."
Shantel plans to join the navy next year and is already versed in some of the ceremonial activities.
"Last October, myself, 32 cadets and five staff attended an 11-day camp in Canberra," she said.
"The highlight of the trip was when I laid a wreath at the National War Memorial at a nightly ceremony for the un-named soldier.
“I have taken part in the vigils and have been involved as part of the guard and the cenotaph party at Anzac Day and Remembrance Day events in Whyalla."
Shantel's involvement with the cadets resulted in a visit to Adelaide to see the launching of the HMAS Hobart and a trip aboard the HMAS Adelaide.
“I have always wanted to travel the world, but it is a little bit expensive,” she said.
Shantel encourages all who may be interested to come to the cadet unit and have a look.
You get to meet new friends and travel to other cadet units in SA plus much more.
For more information, please contact Lieutenant Kym Masters on 0438 967 312