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The Civil Air Patrol is the official United States Air Force Auxiliary. With more than 56,000 members, 1700 units, and over 4,700 active aircraft it is by far the largest organization of its kind. The Civil Air Patrol has been performing missions for America for over 60 years. Emergency Services - The Civil Air Patrol performs Search & Rescue missions and Disaster Relief, provides assistance to the Office of Emergency Services for transportation of personnel, rescue equipment, blood donations etc.). Aerospace Education - The Civil Air Patrol educates its members and the general public about aviation and aerospace. Cadet Programs - The Civil Air Patrol runs a comprehensive program for youth (12-21) with skill and leadership-building activities, introduction to flying, aerospace education and participation emergency mission training.
Civil Air Patrol is a civilian organization, however as the Auxiliary of the U.S. Air Force, it comes as no surprise that it is organized along military customs, courtesies and ranks.
Since Civil Air Patrol’s formation during the earliest days of World War II, this vigilant organization of citizen Airmen has been committed to service to America. Founded on Dec. 1, 1941, as a way to protect the nation’s shorelines from invading German U-boats, CAP has evolved into a premier public service organization that still carries out emergency service missions when needed - in the air and on the ground.
As a Total Force partner and Auxiliary of the U.S. Air Force, Civil Air Patrol is there to search for and find the lost, provide comfort in times of disaster and work to keep the homeland safe. Its 56,000 members selflessly devote their time, energy and expertise toward the well-being of their communities, while also promoting aviation and related fields through aerospace/STEM education and helping shape future leaders through CAP’s cadet program.
Civil Air Patrol’s missions for America are many, and today’s adults and cadets perform their duties with the same vigilance as its founding members - preserving CAP’s 75-year legacy of service while maintaining its commitment to nearly 1,500 communities nationwide.