Women of Aviation Worldwide Week 2023

This week, March 6th-12th, is Women of Aviation Worldwide Week, a global aviation awareness week observed to mark the anniversary of the world’s first female pilot license. This week serves as not only a call to address gender imbalance in the air and space industry, but also to motivate the industry to assess its current state, celebrate its progresses, and offer women and girls opportunities to explore aviation.

In Manitoba, Babcock Canada provides a full range of aerial firefighting services including the management, maintenance, and operation of 10 aircraft, including seven Canadair water-bomber amphibious aircraft and three Babcock-owned 690 Twin Commander “bird-dog” aircraft. Our aviation team and dedicated support staff in Manitoba are always hard at work supporting the efforts to combat wildfires and helping protect people, communities, and resources across the province.

Today, in honour of Women of Aviation Worldwide Week, we are proud to spotlight Idris Dheedene, Technical Records Clerk, based out of our Winnipeg office. Idris has been a part of the Babcock family since 2019.

As a Technical Records Clerk, one of Idris’ many responsibilities is to make entries in the technical records of the aircraft as required by Canadian Aviation Regulations. Idris expressed that luckily, this does not have to be completed manually anymore! Much of her role also consists of Quality Control functions including the review of maintenance task cards that have been completed by Aircraft Maintenance Engineers as well as aircraft flight log pages. This involves recording any discrepancies found, updating airtime, any compliance items, and making tech log entries as applicable in Babcock’s web-based maintenance software program: Winair. Idris also updates compliance on aircraft and components ensuring the remaining interval gets updated correctly and components do not exceed their overhaul/life limit.

During heavy winter maintenance, Idris updates key performance indicators such as percent completion, work hours remaining, and many more. Idris explained:

One thing is sure; there is always lots to do in the aviation industry! Expect ‘non-average’ days, especially in the busy wildfire season!

Idris Dheedene

Idris’ favourite thing about the aviation industry is the talented and dedicated people that she gets to work with. She shared with us that “everyone on the aerial wildfire program team here in Winnipeg, are good-humored, friendly, and smart people.” Idris continued, “since day one I noticed most of the people have been working together for a number of years. This makes for a very positive work atmosphere. Everyone is always helpful and very welcoming to newcomers. We are a work-family. Honestly, this is the reason I prefer to work on site rather than remotely.”

When it comes to aviation, Idris has three pieces of advice for women interested in pursuing a career within the industry:

  1. Prepare for busy days,
  2. Being familiar with Aviation Regulatory requirements will go a long way,
  3. Believe in yourself.

Babcock Canada’s Commitment Towards an Inclusive Work Environment:

At Babcock, we are committed to creating an agile, people-centered business where everyone is included, supported, and empowered to unlock their full potential – regardless of gender. We see inclusion as a critical business enabler and the key to creating the right foundations to attract and retain the best and diverse talent.

For more information: To learn more about Babcock’s services that protect the people, communities, and natural resources of Manitoba, visit our frontline support page.

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