Exercise Canadian Invasion is a series of not-for-profit international tours organized for youth members of the Canadian Cadet Organizations. Each ECI tour is lead by select Canadian Armed Forces Reservists and Civilian Instructors who volunteer their personal time to do so. ECI tours are primarily conducted in the United Kingdom, France and Belgium, with a focus on learning about Canada’s contributions and sacrifices during the First and Second World Wars.
Participants will visit Commonwealth War Graves Cemeteries, locations of Canadian military significance such as the Canadian National Memorial Vimy Ridge, Beaumont-Hamel Newfoundland Memorial, Dieppe and Juno Beach. ECI tours are considered ‘optional training’ in the Cadet programme and as such are not funded by the Department of National Defense. As such, all participants cover the costs of the tour, hopefully with financial assistance through fundraising and community spirited corporate donations.
We do everything we can to keep the tour affordable to participants, from staying in military accommodations and student hostels, to hiring our own coach transportation directly and book economy air travel. The experience isn’t on the cheap though! Our participants experience many adventures on our tours, starting with a 12 month course of study, complete a 1,500 word essay, and sit two interview boards to qualify. And this is on top of the required eligibility requirements that tour applicants must meet.
During the tour, participants will lay wreaths at CWG Cemeteries, memorials and cenotaphs. We also visit battlefields, walk through the trenches and underground bunkers. We also visit museums, both military and cultural, and tour the communities, exploring the streets and shops, enjoy wonderful meals – and do a little shopping along the way! Exercise Canadian Invasion tours can be the experience of a life time for youth participants. Follow us here and visit our Facebook page at www.facebook.com/exercisecanadianinvasion to follow us and view previous tours.