The first year of the COPA For Kids Aviation Program has been a big success. Although we did not reach the goal of 2009 Junior Aviators, 208 COPA members helped introduce 1,365 children ages 7-17 to aviation by providing them a free of charge flight in their aircraft!
There were more than 40 events held throughout 2009 and the names of all the pilots and participants were entered into our online logbook, which is on the COPA For Kids website www.copaforkids.org and also on EAA’s Young Eagles logbook http://www.youngeagles.org/logbook/.
COPA would like to congratulate the top pilots of 2009. Tied for first place are Henry Ilg of Richmond, British Columbia and Ray Dechene of Nanoose, British Columbia with 21 Junior Aviators each.
Tied for second are Barry Jackson of Vernon, British Columbia and Allen Blakely of Surrey, British Columbia who each flew19 Junior Aviators. In third place is Homme Van Der Meer of Armstrong, British Columbia with 18 Junior Aviators flown.
The top COPA Flight was Flight 44 in Buttonville, Ontario. This Flight flew an impressive 409 Junior Aviators!
The COPA Flights who participated this year also did a great job of advertising their event within their community. Some Flights placed ads in their local papers, ran messages on their local radio stations, passed out fliers to schools and other youth groups.
Another great way of advertising your upcoming event would be to register your event on our website www.copaforkids.org. It’s a great spot for parents to come and look for information about events in their area. A poster template is also available on the COPA For Kids website in colour and black and white.
Unfortunately, 246 participants had to be disqualified from the COPA For Kids Program. They were ineligible for reasons such as being too old or too young, their forms were not signed by their parents, the pilots did not fill out the required information or sign each sheet or their pilot was not a valid COPA member.
It is disappointing that these children had to be excluded but we want to remain within the bounds of our liability insurance coverage and make each event as safe as possible.
To ensure that your event will run smoothly and no one will be excluded, please read over the COPA Guide to COPA For Kids which is available on our websites www.copanational.org and www.copaforkids.org.
Also it is essential to note that only current COPA members may participate in this program and that all flights must be done as part of an event that is organized by a COPA Flight.
It is also important to note that all signed waivers must be sent in to our office in order for pilots and participants to be entered into the logbook.
As the second year of the COPA For Kids Program begins, I hope that 2010 is even more successful than last year and that even more children can learn about the joys of flying from our dedicated COPA members!