Looking Back: Women in Force Pilot Program 2017
By: Major Ricki-Lee Richard CD
Infrastructure Project, CFLTC
In 2017, the Canadian Forces Logistics Training Centre took the lead on providing a Women in Force Program (WFP) which was to be a pilot program aimed at providing eligible Canadian women with the ground truth about what it is like to be employed in the Canadian Armed Forces. Participants arrived with many varying ideas about life in the Forces, but many were surprised by what they learned. Throughout the program, they saw current Canadian Armed Forces women provide informative lectures, demonstrate expertise in their respective trades, exude confidence and astute leadership amongst all genders, trades and ranks, as well as prove that women were more than capable of the physicality required to serve. It was not long before the staff noticed a change in participants as they began, shy and uncertain, and flourished into information-seeking, curious, fearless women.
The staff who assisted on the WFP serials were humbled by the emotive sentiments voiced by the participants, happy to see the interest grow within the participants as we had once experienced ourselves, and our pride was reinvigorated to be able to show others this wonderful profession that we have committed our lives to. There truly is nothing else like it.
Now, nearly two years later, we hope for yet another WFP to run in order to provide new participants with the ground truth of being a Canadian Armed Forces member. Seeing several participants join either the Regular Force (at least 7 of 59) or Reserve Force (at least 3 of 59), as well as many more being processed through recruiting or awaiting basic training, it is great to think that our program played a part.
To all of the staff, what an honour to work with you all in order to show others this amazing family that we belong to. To the past participants, we continue to wish you the best in your future endeavours and hope to see you in uniform one day. And to those who are curious, or who are already interested, please seek out your local Recruiting Centre (visit www.Forces.ca). We are always happy to welcome new members who are interested, capable, driven, and of course, proud Canadians!