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To help you understand us better, the following information is provided by CAP National Headquarters and describes our organization as a whole.

Civil Air Patrol Missions

slogan For more than 50 years, the Civil Air Patrol has aggressively performed the missions Congress mandated in 1946: Aerospace Education, Cadet Programs, and Emergency Services.

Aerospace Education

America's love of manned flight started with the Wright brothers and continues unabated during this century. World War II showcased the important role aviation would play in the future and national leaders recognized the importance of stimulating public interest in aerospace activities.

astronaut CAP, as the civilian Auxiliary of the U.S. Air Force, was most suited to perform this mission. Their efforts focused on two different audiences - internal CAP members and the general public.

The internal programs ensure that all CAP members (seniors and cadets) have an appreciation for and knowledge of aerospace issues. A rigorous educational program is tied to promotions at every level in the CAP organization.

Aerospace educators working out of CAP's National Headquarters at Maxwell AFB, Ala., provide materials that are current and reflect the highest standards of educational excellence.

The congressional charteralso tasked CAP to stimulate public interest in aerospace issues. Theseexternal programs are primarily conducted through our nation's education systems.

Each year, CAP sponsors nearly 200 workshops in colleges and universities across the nation which reach more than 5,000 educators.


These workshops highlight basic aerospace knowledge and focus on advances in aerospace technology. Textbooks, learning tools, and visual aids geared to stimulate interest in aerospace matters also are provided for teachers to use in their classrooms.

Started in 1951, theseworkshops have reached hundreds of thousands of young people.

"CAP...a liaison between the planners of our air strength and our pilots and navigators of tomorrow...We must pass on our air experience -- not only in the Air Forces, but in every section of the country."

General Carl Spaatz
Former Chairman, CAP National Board

Civil Air Patrol Organization

The Civil Air Patrol is a civilian organization but, as the civilian Auxiliary of the U.S. Air Force, it comes as no surprise that it is organized along military lines.

CAP is organized into eight geographic regions. These regions are subdivided by the states falling within their boundaries and each state has a CAP wing. Additionally, the District of Columbia and Commonwealth of Puerto Rico have CAP wings.

These 52wings are then subdivided into groups, squadrons, and flights depending on their size. There are more than 1,700 CAP units, half of which are composite squadrons or squadrons that have both senior and cadet members.

The highest governing body of CAP is the National Board, chaired by a member of the CAP Corporation whose title is National Commander. This position is held by a CAP Brigadier General elected by the members. Other members of the Board include the eight region and 52 wing commanders


This governing body also includes an elected National Vice Commander, Chief of Staff, Legal Officer, Finance Officer, and Controller - all civilian volunteers who have no active duty Air Force obligations or privileges.

There isone key position on the National Board that ties the CAP Corporation to the U.S. Air Force - the Senior Air Force Advisor.

The advisor'sposition is held by an active-duty Air Force Colonel who, in addition toserving as the Senior Air Force Adviser, is responsible for all active dutyand DoD civilian employees who provide liaison oversight and advice to theCAP organization.

In this capacity, the Senior Air Force advisor is also the CAP-USAF Commander.

Sound confusing? It's really not. When Congress enacted Public Law 557 in 1948, they determinedthat active-duty Air Force personnel should be assigned to provide advice and assistance to the organization. Hence, Headquarters CAP-USAF was established.

"As the active force drawsdown, the Air Force will engage in increased burden-sharing with its Guard,Reserve and Auxiliary (CAP) components. It is critical that U.S. AirForce installation and unit commanders provide priority support to CAP--whichin turn enhances CAP mission readiness and a payback in increased missionsupport to the Air Force by its civilian Auxiliary."

Mr.Bryan Sharratt
Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Air Force
(Reserve Affairs)

What the Civil Air Patrol can do for you!

Civil Air Patrol can assist you! Cadets and senior CAP members provide a wealth of talent you can draw upon for many different projects and events.

Special Events

Having an Open House/Airshow? Call the Civil Air Patrol to conduct your air show survey.

Need assistance directing traffic, giving directions, handing out flyers or manning booths during your open house celebration? Call the Civil Air Patrol.

Exercise Manpower

Having an exercise and need people to play wounded or casualties? Call the Civil Air Patrol.

cap-plane Operations Support

Need to complete a low-level route survey? Call the Civil Air Patrol. They can also help out with support for airfield photography.

Need to survey a crash site or environmental problem at your base? Call the Civil Air Patrol.

Need a backup communication source for your base disaster/reconstitution and recovery plan? The Civil Air Patrol can help.

Problems with ELTs sending a signal from your flight-line/base? Contact the Civil Air Patrol.

Community Ambassadors

Wondering who to call in the local community to help get the word out about a base project or initiative? Call the Civil Air Patrol.

"Your efforts in theCivil Air Patrol reflect the commitment to voluntary community service thatwill be essential to solving our nation's most pressing social problems. By reaching out to those in need, you are setting an outstanding example for your fellow Americans. I commend you for your generosity and concern for others."

Former President George Bush

Air Power Advocates

Looking for speakers for local school activities or civic groups? Call the Civil Air Patrol.

drill-team Drill & Ceremony

Need an honor guard or drill team for a local event or ceremony? Call the Civil Air Patrol.

Education Force Multipliers

Develop closer ties with local schools by helping them sponsor aerospace education workshops.

Education Programs

Civil AirPatrol flight and academic scholarships are available for deserving young people at your installation.

Civil AirPatrol cadet programs provide Air Force recruiters with a pool of quality young men and women who have shown an interest in aviation. Close communications between U.S. Air Force recruiters and CAP units pay big dividends.

What You Can Do!

For more than 50 years, the Civil Air Patrol and the U.S. Air Force have worked closely together contributing to the welfare of the nation. This partnership, founded in Public Law 557, authorizes the U.S. Air Force to provide resources and equipment to support the Civil Air Patrol missions.

If you have any questions about what you can or cannot provide, call your state liaison officer or National Headquarters Civil Air Patrol at 1-800-FLY-2338.

The above information on Civil Air Patrol is a copy of the HTML version of CAP Manual 50-2 published on-line at CAP National Headquarters.  CAP Manual 50-2 was produced by the Marketing & Publications Directorate, CAP National Headquarters, 105 South Hansell Street, Building 714, Maxwell AFB, AL 36112-6332.
Publication Credits: CAP National Commander--Brig. Gen. JamesC. Bobick, CAP; CAP Executive Director--Col. Paul J. Albano, Sr., CAP; Director, Marketing and PR--Mary Nell Crowe; Concept &Content--Maj. Lorrie Bourland (U.S. Air Force Reserve);Coordinator-- Mary Nell Crowe; Layout & Design--JamesF. Tynan; Printer-- CAP Print Plant; HTML Conversion--HQCAP MSI Dept.

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