A special homecoming: More than 350 SAFVC Volunteers gathered to celebrate their Formation's 8th anniversary.
It was a long-awaited face-to-face reunion for the SAFVC Volunteers (SVs), who turned up bright and early on a Saturday morning to mark the Formation's 8th anniversary.
Held on 18 Feb in Maju Camp, the event saw smiles and hugs all around as the SVs caught up with one another in person – the last three anniversaries had been held virtually due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Meet some of these SVs and check out what they did!
Singing songs to raise their spirits, the SVs kickstart the day with a route march at Maju Camp.
You lift me up: A pair of buddies practise pulling each other from a seated into a standing position, as part of combat physical training (PT). Led by Conducting Officer Master Warrant Officer Chu Cheng Chwee, these exercises train their muscle memories for actions they may require during deployments and missions.
The exercises include leopard crawls as well as carrying and lifting their load-bearing vests overhead.
SV1 Michael Danieles, an Intelligence Trainer (Drone), leaping over his buddy as part of the combat PT.
SAFVC Volunteer Trainee [SV(T)] Rosaline Chang (foreground, left) joined the SAFVC because she had always been interested in the military. Back in secondary school, she missed out on the chance to join the National Cadet Corps as it only took in boys then.
Now, the Auxiliary Security Trooper (AST) has even more reason to be part of the SAF: She wants to set a good example for her son, who will finish junior college this year and be enlisting into National Service (NS) soon.
"I was thinking that if I experience what he will be going through, then we will have another common topic to talk about. I'll also be in a better position to advise and encourage him.
"He will be more convinced when I tell him, 'If your 42-year-old mum can do it, so can you!'" said SV(T) Chang, who works in the finance industry.
Putting their best foot forward: The day's festivities culminated in a friendly foot drill competition, led by Formation Sergeant Major Senior Warrant Officer (SWO) Chew Kim Leng (wearing red beret).
The SVs cheered excitedly for their detachment's "best marchers", who had to quickly and accurately follow SWO Chew's commands.
Homecoming: Commander SAFVC COL Cheong Yunn Shaur and SWO Chew (fourth and fifth from left) joined by former Commanders SAFVC and Formation Sergeant Majors as they cut the birthday cake.
"The success of the SAFVC is not by chance, but by the commitment and ownership of each generation of SVs… It is our duty to ensure that the SAFVC remains a cohesive, credible and committed force that will never give up when protecting our homeland," said COL Cheong as he welcomed the SVs back to Maju Camp for their first physical Formation Day since 2019.
Being an SV will soon take on a different meaning for SV2 Geoffrey Delhaye, 39, when he welcomes his son with his wife, fellow volunteer, SV1 Felicia Ang.
The AST, who has two daughters aged two and four, recounted his recent deployment wistfully: "I was at Pasir Laba Camp for the Specialist Cadet Graduation Parade and saw all the graduands and their parents who were there to witness it.
"I was thinking, now that I have a didi (little boy) coming, maybe I will have the chance to attend the ceremony as well in 18 years' time? I will be very excited! Being an SV will be very helpful in aiding me to guide him when he enlists for NS."
SV1 Danieles made use of his background in engineering and the aviation industry to become a drone trainer with the SAFVC.
He is glad for the chance to contribute with his experience, especially with the growing role of drones in modern warfare. "Nowadays, especially (with developments like in) the Ukraine war, it's important to know about drones and how they are used.
"The SAF has some (drone-related) specialisations, and an introduction to drone training would give soldiers a sense of how they would perform (operating drones)," said the 46-year-old.
Most recently, he helped out at the Women's Boot Camp in early February, demonstrating the SAF's drone capabilities in spotting enemies and collecting intelligence.