Are you an Indigenous youth living in western Canada or north-western Ontario? Interested in a challenging summer experience that delivers hands-on skills development, encourages teamwork, provides physical fitness training and promotes cultural awareness?
Bold Eagle is the program for you! This unique summer employment program combines Indigenous culture and teachings with military training, that will help you develop valuable skills such as self-confidence, self-discipline, teamwork, time management, respect and fitness.
The 6 week program is conducted from early July to late August each year.
Benefits of the program
During the program, you’ll find out more about yourself and what you’re capable of achieving through hard work, perseverance and teamwork. You’ll also have the chance to meet Indigenous youth from across western Canada. Overall, the program will help you prepare yourself for the future – wherever that may take you.
During the program, we’ll provide you with:
- meals and accommodation
- military clothing and equipment
- transportation to and from Wainwright
- over $4,200 in salary
At the end of the program, we can arrange with your high school guidance counselor to register your time in the program as career experience credits.
If you live near a Primary Reserve unit, you can continue to serve part-time in the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) when you return to your community. This is an excellent part-time career option, and a chance to further your service in the CAF should you choose this route.
Are you up the Bold Eagle challenge? The first step is finding out if you’re eligible. To be eligible for the Bold Eagle program you must:
- be First Nation, Métis or Inuit
- be 16 years of age or older
- have completed your Grade 10
- be a Canadian citizen
- reside in western Canada or north-western Ontario
Further instructions for applicants 18 and under
If you’re 16, you can still apply to the Bold Eagle program as long as you’re a full-time student and will turn 17 before the enrolment date. All applicants under the age of 18 must obtain consent from a parent or legal guardian to participate in this exciting opportunity.
If you’re still completing Grade 10, you must send us a letter from your high school outlining the courses you’re taking and your potential to complete them successfully. Make sure to send us your proof of completion early, as you cannot be enrolled in the program without it, and slots fill up early.
Residents of British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba and NW Ontario are also eligible to apply for the program.
Bold Eagle training
When you’re accepted to the Bold Eagle program, your training will take place in Wainwright, Alberta at the 3rd Canadian Division Training Centre from early July to late August each year.
The development program is made up of two parts.
The first week involves the Culture Camp, where you will learn traditional Indigenous values and teachings as taught by Indigenous Elders and cultural staff. The Culture Camp helps candidates understand the need for self-discipline and teamwork and instills pride and the sense of continuing the Indigenous tradition of military service.
At the end of the first week, you’ll continue your military training with CAF military instructors. The course itself is the standard five-week Army Reserve Basic Military Qualification (BMQ). During the BMQ course, you’ll learn a number of skills including weapons handling, navigation with a map and compass, first aid, drill, outdoor field craft and survival skills.
You’ll l also have the opportunity to participate in a local powwow and attend an organized career day that will introduce you to the education and career options in the CAF.
In addition to the comprehensive and extremely demanding training, there are regular Elder hours throughout, and also a mid-course sweat in the sweat lodge.
At the end of the program, you’ll be congratulated on your success with a graduation ceremony that encompasses military protocol with Indigenous customs. Bold Eagle recruits are enrolled in the Primary Reserve at the beginning of the course. That means that you can continue your part-time career with the CAF, should you choose to do so.
How to apply to the Bold Eagle program
To apply to the Bold Eagle program, make sure you have all of the required documents, including your:
- Canadian Forces Employment Application (PDF, 794 KB) (HTML) or Online Application
- Birth Certificate
- Status Card or Driver's License or Passport or Provincial Health Card (photo identification)
- Official education transcripts
- Personnel Screening Consent and Authorization
- Personal Data Verification Consent (PDF, 262 KB)
- Pre-enrolment Security Pre-Assessment Questionnaire (PDF, 523 KB)
- your Social Insurance number card
Send your completed application forms and supporting documents by fax or mail, or deliver in person, to the nearest Canadian Forces Recruiting Centre. They will review your application and contact you to arrange the necessary processing appointments. Find out more about the application process.
To secure your spot, make sure to complete all necessary documents, and submit your application well before the deadline on April 30th. Our recruiting centres start taking applications at the beginning of September each year. There are a limited number of vacancies by province available for Bold Eagle, so don’t wait! However, contact the Recruiting Centre to confirm as there may be occasions where they accept an application after the deadline.
Once you’re accepted, we’ll send you a package containing all course details. We’ll also work with you to schedule your travel arrangements.
For more information about Bold Eagle, or to apply to the program, contact a recruiter near you at 1-800-856-8488. You can also contact them to request a presentation on the various CAF Indigenous programs - Bold Eagle, Raven, Black Bear, the Aboriginal Leadership Opportunity Year and the Canadian Forces Aboriginal Entry Program.
You can also request for a Bold Eagle Coordinator to come to your community or organization to give a presentation about the program, please send a detailed email request for consideration to the Bold Eagle Coordinator, or call 780-842-1363 ext. 5158 or 780-261-0202.
For requests to visit rural or remote locations, the Bold Eagle Coordinator will try to include your community, when it is feasible to do so, during a planned visit to the region.
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