Feature Story                                                                                       Wednesday, January 14, 2015

 

Flygirls

Local pilot Kirsten Brazier is aiming high with Girls Fly Too! event in Abbotsford March 7-8

By Kirsten Brazier, Abbotsford/Submitted photos

 

Pilot Kirsten Brazier sits behind the controls of a Bell Jetranger with first-time flier Kirsten Peterson from Yellowknife, NT. Scott Lough photo. Below kids love the view from above. Brenda Norris photo.

 

he Sky’s No Limit – Girls Fly Too!, annual events are part of an outreach initiative founded by BC pilot Kirsten Brazier in 2012.

 

Events organized by The Sky’s No Limit – Girls Fly Too! have won several international awards and set two world precedents.


On March 7-8 over 10,000 Lower Mainland females of all ages will gather at the Abbotsford Airport to celebrate this year’s The Sky’s No Limit – Girls Fly Too! event for Women of Aviation Worldwide Week and International Women’s Day.

 

Free flights are offered to females who have not flown in a small aircraft before, participants can try their hand at many aviation and aerospace activities, and civilian and non-civilian VIPS will be on hand with aircraft to explore.


Reminiscent of the women employed at Boeing Canada’s Sea Island aircraft manufacturing facility in the 1940’s, participants will have the opportunity to rivet a real aircraft and see how aircraft are built. They’ll also be able to walk on the moon and explore space with Starlab 2.0, the portable planetarium presented by H.R. MacMillan Space Centre.

 

Families are welcome, and the entire event is free, thanks to community minded partners such as the Carson Air Group, the University of the Fraser Valley and other industry partners.


Out of 24,505 professional pilots in Canada, only 1356 of them are women. Out of 19,601 aircraft engineers, only 560 of them are women. Less than 3% of the technical positions in the Royal Canadian Air Force, such as pilot or maintenance technician, are held by women.


“It would be easy to conclude that women are unwelcome in these fields. Instead, studies have shown that a common perception persists that aviation and aerospace careers are reserved for men,” Brazier said. “Since society observes mostly men employed in these fields, this perception is reinforced.”


The Sky’s No Limit – Girls Fly Too! outreach events aim to change this perception by welcoming women to the airport and giving them a hands-on introduction to aviation and aerospace.

 

“The first flight experience is so incredibly amazing that we just have to share it,” said Kirsten. “It’s often the catalyst that is needed to inspire interest in aviation and aerospace, whether as a pilot, air traffic controller, aircraft mechanic, or aeronautical engineer. Opportunities are endless.”


The event is about education as much as it is about inspiring girls and women. Therefore everyone - male and female alike - is encouraged to participate or volunteer at the event.


Brazier is a professional pilot from the Lower Mainland, BC and she holds Airline Transport Ratings for both aeroplanes and helicopters. With over 20 years of flying experience, Brazier has enjoyed a diverse career flying across Canada on wheels, floats, skis and skids as well as two-crew operations in both aeroplanes and helicopters.

 

Download the event schedule here.


The event is looking for volunteers. For more information, visit www.girlsfly2.ca
Connect on Facebook here and on Twitter here.

 

 

 

 

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