Programs for Indigenous Peoples

Make an impact in your community and country.

The Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) has several educational programs and entry plans for Indigenous peoples. Select one of the programs below to learn more.

Aboriginal Leadership Opportunities Year

The Aboriginal Leadership Opportunities Year (ALOY) is a one-year educational and leadership experience through the Royal Military College of Canada (RMC) in Kingston, Ontario. The ALOY program includes:

  • Sports
  • Field trips
  • Leadership development
  • Military training
  • Cultural support activities
  • Individual learning plans

Through these learning plans, you will take part in individual and small group tutorials for pre-university (non-credit) and first-year university courses.

As part of the program, you will enrol in the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) for one year as an Officer Cadet and receive free tuition and books. You may request to leave the program at any time. At the end of the year, you may apply to continue at RMC in a degree program through either the Regular Officer Training Program or the Reserve Entry Training Plan.

How to apply

To apply for the ALOY program you must have completed at least Grade 12 (Secondaire V in Quebec), or have obtained your GED. Applications are due February 15 so that all the arrangements can be made for the beginning of the school year in September. In addition to filling out the online application, you must also submit the ALOY enrolment form (PDF, 181 KB).

RMC is situated on Point Frederick just east of downtown Kingston, Ontario. It is a beautiful location, overlooking the city, the entrance to the St. Lawrence River and Lake Ontario.

The Royal Military College

Canadian Forces Aboriginal Entry Program

The Canadian Forces Aboriginal Entry Program (CFAEP) is a special three-week course for Indigenous peoples who are considering a career in the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF). During the program, you will get hands-on experience with military training, careers and lifestyle.

You do not have to join the CAF after completing the three weeks. At the end of the program, you will receive $1,200 and a certificate of military achievement.

The course takes place at the Canadian Forces Leadership and Recruit School in Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu, Quebec and at Canadian Forces Base Halifax, Nova Scotia. We provide transportation to and from the training centre, living accommodations, food, clothing and all equipment for the course. At the end of the course, if you choose to join the CAF, you will return home until the next available Basic Training course starts.

What you will learn

You will learn about the long and proud history of Indigenous peoples in Canada’s military and take part in exercises similar to Basic Training, such as:

  • Morning inspections
  • Daily physical fitness and sports
  • Navigation with compass and maps
  • Basic weapons training
  • Military drill

You will also try living in field conditions. Civilian Indigenous counsellors will be available to assist you with the transition to military life.

How to apply

To apply to the CFAEP, you must fill out the online application. When filling out the “Program Choices” field, choose “CFAEP”. You may apply at any time throughout the year.

The CFAEP is a unique three-week course with the option, but no obligation, to join the CAF.

Lieutenant-General Walter Semianiw, Commander Canada Command salutes a general salute during the 1 Canadian Ranger Patrol Unit Commendation Ceremony.

Summer Training Programs

Are you an Indigenous Youth living in Canada, and are you looking for a very challenging and rewarding employment opportunity for the summer? Do you like to make new friends, work hard, like doing physical activities and enjoy the outdoors? Then maybe our Summer Programs are exactly what you are looking for.

The Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) offers five summer training programs that combine military lifestyle with cultural awareness. Each 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. Click on the headings to learn more:

  • Bold Eagle
  • The Bold Eagle program is open to Indigenous peoples living in Western Canada or Northwestern Ontario. Participants train in Wainwright, Alberta at the 3rd Canadian Division Training Centre from early July to late August each year. Applications are accepted starting in September of each year and, you must submit your application by April 30 to ensure processing for the summer program opportunities. Depending on availability and screening requirements, applications submitted after this date may still be considered.

    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 Contact
    Phone: 780-842-1363 ext. 5158 or 780-261-0202
    Email: boldeagle@forces.gc.ca
    Website: https://www.canada.ca/en/army/services/bold-eagle.html

  • Raven
  • The Raven program is a Navy summer program for Indigenous peoples from across Canada. Participants train in Esquimalt, British Columbia, at the Work Point Barracks, and the staff are current Military members who have years of experience.

    Applications are accepted starting in September of each year and, you must submit your application by April 30 to ensure processing for the summer program opportunities. Depending on availability and screening requirements, applications submitted after this date may still be considered. If you wish to file an application, be sure you submit it to your nearest Canadian Armed Forces Recruiting Centre. If you have more specific questions about the Raven program please see the contact list below:

    Raven Contact
    Email: p-esqraven@forces.gc.ca
    Phone: 250-363-0901

  • Black Bear
  • The Black Bear program is an Army training program for Indigenous peoples from across Canada. Participants train in Oromocto, New Brunswick, at the 5th Canadian Division Training Center.

    This program will allow you to find out more about yourself and what you are capable of achieving through hard work, perseverance and reliance on others. You will also meet Indigenous youth from across Canada.

    Applications are accepted starting in September of each year and, you must submit your application by April 30 to ensure processing for the summer program opportunities. Depending on availability and screening requirements, applications submitted after this date may still be considered.

    Black Bear Contact
    Phone: 506-422-2000 ext. 6764 or 506-292-0124
    Email: Matt.Graham2@forces.gc.ca
    Website: https://www.canada.ca/en/army/services/black-bear.html

  • Carcajou
  • Are you an Indigenous person living in Canada? Interested in a challenging summer experience that delivers hands-on skills development, encourages teamwork, provides physical fitness training and promotes cultural awareness?

    If so, Carcajou is the program for you! This unique summer training program, which combines Indigenous culture and teachings with military training, will help you develop valuable skills such as self-confidence, self-discipline, teamwork, time management, respect and fitness. Carcajou is an Army program open to Indigenous people living across Canada and is delivered mostly in French, but will be bilingual. Participants train in Valcartier, Quebec.

    The six-week program is conducted from early July to mid-August each year. During this time, you are enrolled as a member of the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF). Upon completion of the program, you can choose to remain in the CAF (as a Regular Force member, a Reserve Force member or a Canadian Ranger) or to be released from service.

    Applications are accepted starting in September of each year and, you must submit your application by April 30 to ensure processing for the summer program opportunities. Depending on availability and screening requirements, applications submitted after this date may still be considered.

    Contact Us
    Carcajou Coordinator: Lt Gabriel Bond-Castelli
    Email: gabriel.bond-castelli@forces.gc.ca
    Phone: 514-252-2777
    Website: https://www.canada.ca/en/army/services/carcajou.html

  • Grey wolf
  • Are you an Indigenous person living in Ontario? Interested in a challenging summer experience that delivers hands-on skills development, encourages teamwork, provides physical fitness training and promotes cultural awareness?

    If so, Grey Wolf is the entry program for you! This unique military training 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. Grey Wolf is a Canadian Army program open to Indigenous people living within a reasonable commuting distance (approximately 75 km) from an Army Reserve unit. Participants train in Meaford, Ontario.

    The six-week program is conducted from early July to late August each year. During this time, you are enrolled as a member of the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF). Upon completion of the training program, you will continue to serve at an Army Reserve unit on a part-time or full-time basis. You may also transfer into the Regular Force.

    Applications are accepted starting in September of each year and, you must submit your application by April 30 to ensure processing for the summer program opportunities. Depending on availability and screening requirements, applications submitted after this date may still be considered.

    Contact Us
    Grey Wolf Coordinator: Contact the Canadian Armed Forces Recruitment Group
    Email: Find a recruiter near you
    Phone: 1-800-856-8488
    Website: https://www.canada.ca/en/army/services/grey-wolf.html

We arrange your travel to and from the program, living accommodations, food, clothing and all equipment. While you are in the program, you are a temporary CAF member. You will be paid around $4,200 for completing your program.

What you will learn

These six-week long programs give you a taste of military training with the option to join the CAF. You are not required to join the CAF after completing the program. The training is based on the Army Reserve Basic Military Qualification and is taught by military instructors. Subjects include:

  • General military knowledge
  • Weapons handling
  • Navigation
  • First Aid
  • Drill

All five summer training programs begin with a culture camp. The camp is designed to ease the transition from civilian to military lifestyle, and focuses on common spiritual beliefs. All culture camps are led by Elders of different First Nations and Indigenous groups. 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.

How to apply

You must have completed at least Grade 10 (Secondaire IV in Quebec). To apply to a summer training program, you must fill out the online application. When filling out the “Program Choices” field, choose “Bold Eagle,” “Raven”, “Black Bear”, “Carcajou”, or “Grey Wolf.” Your application is due by the end of April so that all the arrangements can be made for the beginning of the programs in July.

Contact us

For more information about our programs, or to apply, contact a recruiter near you at 1-800-856-8488. You can also contact them to request a presentation in your community on the various CAF Indigenous programs. For requests to visit rural or remote locations, a coordinator will try to include your community, when it is feasible to do so, during a planned visit to the region.

At the end of the course, you will recieve the CAF Army Reserve Basic Military Qualification and have the option to join the Reserve Force.

The 2010 Bold Eagle graduation ceremony in Wainwright, AB.
Learn more about our programs for Indigenous peoples