Wounded Warriors Canada Veteran Trainers to Eradicate the Use of Child Soldiers (VTECS)


The Wounded Warriors Canada Veterans Trainers to Eradicate the Use of Child Soldiers (VTECS) program will provide an opportunity for veterans, competitively chosen to participate, to acquire a deep and broad understanding of the skills, knowledge and attitudes required of security sector actors to legally, humanely and effectively interact with children/child soldiers in domestic or foreign operational areas. This program will provide an opportunity to receive focused education in this field, and to develop academic and instructor/facilitation skills, which may be of benefit in all areas for veterans transitioning from military to civilian life and employment.  As they reconstruct their skills and experiences, Canadian Forces Veterans become community educators and advocates, championing the Dallaire Initiative’s vision of a world where children are no longer recruited or used as weapons of war.

The Wounded Warriors VTECS program is the result of a partnership of Canadian organizations and individuals supporting the Dallaire Initiative in our mission to eradicate the recruitment and use of child soldiers around the world. Led by Wounded Warriors Canada (WWC) and with the support of the Air Canada Foundation, we aim to provide opportunities for veterans of the Canadian Forces to successfully transition from service to civilian life. WWC seeks to provide opportunities to educate, train and develop veterans, especially wounded veterans, which will enable them to find full, part-time and/or contract employment.

The Roméo Dallaire Child Soldiers Initiative’s mission is to progressively eradicate the use of child soldiers through a security sector approach. The Dallaire Initiative conducts focused research on the plight of children affected by armed conflict, and most particularly child soldiers; training for security sector actors (military, police etc.) around the world on the phenomena of child soldiers; takes part in high-level domestic and international advocacy to end the recruitment and use of child soldiers and to hold accountable those responsible for these international crimes; and leads education into the root causes, and potential solutions, for this abuse of children.

Veteran Trainers to Eradicate the Use of Child Soldiers

Frequently Asked Questions

Who is eligible to apply for this program?

Veterans of the Canadian Armed Forces (Regular Force or Primary Reserve) currently living in Canada who possess a good conduct release from the Canadian Armed Forces.

Where is the VTECS Program located?

The VTECS program will be conducted at Dalhousie University (the institutional home of the Roméo Dallaire Child Soldiers Initiative) in Halifax, Nova Scotia from 1 July 2017 – 29 July 2017.

The VTECS program also includes a 4 month online course prior to the residency in Halifax. The course begins on March 1st, 2017 and can be completed anywhere with access to reliable internet.

What sort of skills are you looking for?

We are eager to engage Canadian veterans who have a mix of experiences, including training security sector personnel or civilians, serving with the Canadian Forces overseas, familiarity with issues related to human rights and child protection, as well as experience working in conflict or fragile states. This program will provide a deep and broad academic and practical education/training opportunity related to children/child soldiers in conflict.

How long is the program?

The program comprises of two components; a non-residency portion to be completed at home and a residency portion at Dalhousie University. The non-residency portion occurs from March-June 2017. The residency portion, in Halifax, takes place from July 1-29, 2017.

What does the VTECS program entail?

Participants will be required to complete the following course and program requirements:

ONLINE – The Dallaire Initiative Course on Global Policing (March-June 2017)

If accepted to the program, participants will be required to successfully complete the Dallaire Initiative’s e-learning course during the non-residency portion of the program from March – June 2017. The online course will provide background information on the phenomena of children/child soldiers and familiarize participants with the Dallaire Initiative’s unique approach to the issue of child soldiers. The course requires reliable access to internet throughout its duration.

RESIDENCY – Dalhousie University, Halifax Nova Scotia (1 July 2017 – 29 July 2017).

The residency portion of the program will be conducted over a four week period (1 July 2017 – 29 July 2017) at Dalhousie University. Participants will be required to successfully complete 2 upper-level credited academic courses on “Children and War” and “World Politics” taught by professors from the Political Science Department. They will also be required to successfully complete a combined “Basic Prevention of the Use of Child Soldiers Course” and a “Train the Trainer Prevention of the Use of Child Soldiers Course” taught by staff from the Dallaire Initiative. Additionally, the residency portion of the program will contain evening lectures and guest speakers on related issues.

All of the above are formal courses, which will require the candidate to fully participate in the training, and successfully complete the rigorous course requirements. Courses and training will be conducted from Monday to Friday throughout this period. There will also be home assignments, readings etc… required in the evenings and on weekends. The academic courses will require successful completion of tests and course papers.

The Dallaire Initiative courses will require successful demonstration of instructional techniques and knowledge of Dallaire Initiative training material.

All seminars will require attendance and participation.

What are the mandatory requirements of the VTECS program?
  • In order to be considered for the Wounded Warriors Canada VTECS program you must meet the following requirements:
  • Be a veteran of the Canadian Armed Forces with a good conduct release.
  • Able to successfully complete the online course requirements from March 1 – June 2017.
  • Able to attend the program in Halifax Nova Scotia from July 1 to July 29 inclusive
  • Able to travel domestically and/or overseas without impediments.
  • Agree to successfully complete a security screening process.
  • Able to travel to and work in austere domestic and overseas environments, including regions requiring inoculations, prophylactic medical care (i.e. malarone) and where some medications may be restricted / prohibited (i.e. Cannabis based treatments)
Where will I reside while in Halifax?

As part of the program, candidates will be provided with a room in residence at Dalhousie University. All facilities used on this program, including cafeteria, classrooms etc…. are within a short walking distance from the residence. The cost of this accommodation is paid as part of this program. All candidates will be provided with a meal allowance from arrival to departure from Dalhousie University. Residence accommodations include kitchenette spaces.

What costs are covered?

Successful candidates will be provided tuition and registration fees for VTECS related courses, return travel from a Canadian centre to Halifax for the July training, campus accommodation and a meal allowance at Dalhousie University from July 1- 29th.

What costs are not covered?

Transit meals, spending money, incidentals, insurance, emergency funds etc… are not paid by the program.

Does application to the program guarantee me a position on the program?

No. Application for this program can be made on line between 19 January 2017 to 12 February 2017. The program is limited to 15 candidates. A selection board will review the applications and will select the final 15 candidates. Several applicants will be designated as “standby” should a candidate refuse the program or be unable to attend.

When can I expect to find out the status of my application?

All applicants, whether selected or not, will be notified on line within 10 business days of the close of application.

What roles do Dallaire Initiative VTECS graduates perform?

VTECS graduates are encouraged to continue to work with the Dallaire Initiative in our mission to eradicate the recruitment and use of child soldiers around the world. VTECS 2016 graduates have spoken publically on this issue, written and been interviewed, and have undertaken many other volunteer activities to assist us in our work. As opportunity and funding permits, VTECS graduates may be invited to take part in Dallaire Initiative training activities at home and abroad, where they would deliver security sector focused, prevention-oriented training related to child soldiers. In this role, Dallaire Initiative trainers would be expected to be able to deliver a mix of classroom theory and participatory and scenario based training to security sector personnel (military, police, peacekeeping and prison services) from around the world.

Important Information for Applicants

The application period for the 2017 VTECS program is now closed.
Please check back in November 2017 for up to date information on how to apply for the 2018 VTECS program.

Help us end the use of children as weapons of war