Attending the Big Brothers Big Sisters (BBBS) Gala in September was an inspiring night for the Yorkton Aircraft team and as a group they came up with a way to support the organization.
"We listened to all the speakers, the Bigs and the Littles and the organizers of this organization with awe," says Cheryl Denesowych, the Business Manager at Yorkton Aircraft. "This organization does so much for the youth of the area and our communities as a whole! Pinball Clemons, as their guest speaker, pushed us into thinking how we can start something to contribute to this great cause. Ideas on how to give back to our home community was on our radar, and our staff came up with a program we are calling First Flight."
"We take our work surroundings at the airport and what we do every day for granted," comments Nathan Gordon, an Aircraft Maintenance Engineer at Yorkton Aircraft, "but when you think about it, it is pretty cool. We wondered how many Littles have ever been to an airport or sat in an airplane. We could invite them to the airport with their Big, which gives them a place to go together, and we could show them our shop and let them be near some airplanes. Then we thought we could reward the volunteer and encourage the little by taking them for a flight around the City. We have pilots on our team, so why not share this with them."
Allan Denesowych, owner of Yorkton Aircraft was quickly on side with the idea. "We see this as a unique way to give back to our home region. Our technicians were equally as excited to show them the shop and the airplanes, the admin staff were excited too. Maybe one of these Littles will consider aviation as a career, whether as a mechanic, a pilot, or an administrative person working alongside airplanes. Our pilots on staff are great young men. We encourage them to use our planes so why not give rides to some very deserving community people," Allan adds.
Yorkton Aircraft Service is in their 25th year of business at the local airport. They are a Transport Canada approved aircraft maintenance facility. "We don't offer flight training, there are other businesses on the Yorkton airfield that are licensed to train," explains Cheryl, "but we serve customers across the Prairies so we have pilots on our staff that allows us to fly to fix airplanes. These are the same airplanes we will give the rides on. I am very proud of our crew for putting this initiative together, for Starting Something."
Start Something is the latest initiative of the Big Brothers Big Sisters organization encouraging involvement in their organization. Promoting the idea that "taking action today could change the life of a child for better, forever" is based on the organization's 100 years of experience in making a meaningful difference to the boys and girls in the communities they serve.
The first individuals to participate in the First Flight Program on Tuesday, October 15, 2013 and take their First Flights was Abhinav Bhargav, BBBS Director of Special Events, Brian Rosenmeyer, Big Brother and Ryan Hamilton, Little Brother with pilot, Jason Sliva plus Allona Zeiben, Big Sister with Robin Hamilton, Little Sister with pilot, Nathan Gordon. It was a beautiful evening for their First Flights. Comments following the flights included, it was so amazing, exciting, and such a great experience. As we continue more Bigs and Littles will have the opportunity to experience their First Flights and learn more about aviation.