The results are in! Consultation on the National Monument to Canada’s Mission in Afghanistan

June 5, 2020 – Defence Stories

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A soldier from the Mission Transition Task Force – Force Protection Company gets ready to conduct a live night range exercise on 14 Oct 2011 in Kandahar, Afghanistan. DND photo

In January, we asked for your input on design considerations for the National Monument to Canada’s Mission in Afghanistan. Thank you to all those who participated!

We targeted our outreach efforts to Veterans, CAF members, their families, and all those who participated in the mission. We received a lot of input—more than 3,800 online questionnaires were completed! The majority of responses (72%) were submitted by you, your former or current comrades, your families and those who participated in the mission.

Veterans Affairs Canada has published the consultation findings—read the full report. The feedback has helped inform the Monument design guidelines, which will guide future design teams in developing their concepts.

Here’s an overview of the findings:

  • A clear consensus that the raison-d’être of the Monument should be to express Canada’s deep gratitude for the sacrifices made by Canadians who served in Afghanistan.
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On 20 November 2007, residents from the town of Cobourg brave the chilly November night air to show their support for Corporal Nicolas Beauchamp and Private Michel Jr. Levesque. DND Photo

  • In terms of visitor experience, the findings show almost equal support for the Monument to serve as a place for personal reflection and contemplation and as an educational tool that inspires visitors of all ages to learn more about the Mission.
  • The three options for the form and character for the Monument ranked closely. The preferred option was a Monument as an ensemble of components that encourages movement through the monument site. An impressive monument set in an open space ranked next, while a human-scale monument set in a more intimate environment ranked third.
  • Many respondents (37%) provided feedback in the open-ended question section. The most common theme reflected was that “sacrifice” should be a focus of the Monument. This included sacrifices made by those serving in Afghanistan, as well as sacrifices made by family members and others who stayed home There was also a call for the Monument to honour all those who served in Afghanistan, including non-CAF members.
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The CAF conducted operations in Afghanistan in a number of different roles involving air, land and sea assets. CAF activities included combat, security, development, support and training operations in varying capacities and regions in Afghanistan. DND Photo

You can read the full consultation findings report on our website at veterans.gc.ca. This input will help us create a monument so future generations have an opportunity to learn more about Canada’s Mission in Afghanistan.

As the project moves forward, you’ll have another opportunity to provide your input. Public consultations on the final design concepts will take place before the winning Monument design is selected and announced.

Together, we continue to express Canada’s deep gratitude for the sacrifices made by Canadians and recognize Canada’s Mission in Afghanistan. For more information on the Monument, please visit veterans.gc.ca.

Canada remembers.

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