For Immediate Release
November 8th , 2017
Halifax NS—Today, the Roméo Dallaire Child Soldiers Initiative launches its latest call for applications for the Wounded Warriors Canada Veteran Trainers to Eradicate the Use of Child Soldiers (VTECS) Program. For the first time, the program will be open to federal, provincial and municipal Police Veterans who will join their Canadian Armed Forces Veterans counterparts in building their capacity to end the use of children as weapons of war.
“The inclusion of police will bring a unique domestic perspective to the VTECS program and build upon the innovative approach of equipping those who served to protect with the tools and knowledge needed to help us end the use of children being used and recruited as soldiers, both domestically and internationally” states Dr. Shelly Whitman, Executive Director of the Roméo Dallaire Child Soldiers Initiative.
Scott Maxwell, Executive Director of Wounded Warriors Canada, commented, “We are proud of what VTECS has been able to accomplish over the last two years. The program is a force multiplier – leveraging the skill set of our highly trained Veterans while providing access to an academic environment, credits/accreditation possibilities, and employment opportunities. The inclusion of police Veterans will only strengthen the program’s ability to make a significant impact both domestically and internationally, enhancing our shared mission to end the use of children as weapons of war.”
The VTECS program delivers education and skills transition training for Canadian military and police veterans by combining academic, fully-credited university classes with specialized training on the skills, knowledge and attitudes required of security sector actors to legally, humanely and effectively interact with child soldiers in domestic or foreign operational areas.
“The Dallaire Initiative has provided me with the tools to be a better advocate, researcher, and trainer in a community of practice that is working to progressively eradicate the recruitment and use of child soldiers through a security sector approach. I am proud to be a ‘VTECS grad’” states Lieutenant-Colonel Dr. Ian MacVicar.
Applications are now being accepted for the 2018 VTECS program. Interested Canadian Veterans can apply online between November 8, 2017 and January 10, 2018. The program is open to any Canadian Armed Forces Veteran and any federal, provincial and municipal police force Veteran with a good conduct release who can meet the program requirements. Program requirements and application information are available online at childsoldiers.org/vtecs