Army Cadets FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions

1How much does it cost?
The Cadet Program is funded by the Department of National Defence in partnership with the civilian Navy League, Army Cadet League and Air Cadet League of Canada. The civilian sponsor requires local community support to meet its obligations that include accommodations, training aids and equipment and program enhancements not otherwise provided. Parents and Cadets are expected to participate in and contribute to fundraising as required by the League’s local sponsoring element.

The Department of National Defence/Canadian Armed Forces assumes costs (including uniform and travel) for Cadets. Consequently, membership in the Cadet Program provides thousands of Canadian youth with unique opportunities free of charge that they might not otherwise experience — making the Cadet Program a viable option.
2Who can join?
To be eligible for membership as a Cadet one must:

1) be a legal resident of Canada: NOTE: A legal resident of Canada is a Canadian citizen, a landed immigrant, or, the dependant of a person who is lawfully resident in Canada on a temporary basis for the purpose of education or employment. provide proof of provincial health insurance coverage or equivalent;

2) be at least 12 years of age; not have attained 19 years of age;

3) normally be in good physical condition;

4) not belong to another corps or squadron; and

5) be acceptable to the Commanding Officer (CO) of the cadet corps or squadron.

The CO of the cadet corps or squadron shall review and approve all membership applications; however, he/she shall consult with the Regional Cadet Support Unit (RCSU) when there is uncertainty as to whether an application meets the basic membership standards or an application requires special consideration such as:

1) application from a youth who is not yet a legal resident of Canada; and

2) application from a youth who has a medical, physical or mental condition specified in Part 2 of the CF 1158 that cannot be accommodated as outlined in the What about medical, physical and mental conditions section below.
3What about medical, physical and mental conditions?
In that a minimum standard of medical fitness has not been established for membership of a cadet in a corps or squadron, a person with a medical condition or who is mentally or physically challenged may become a member at the Commanding Officer’s discretion.

The Commanding Officer of the Cadet Corps or Squadron shall ensure that:

1) the parent or guardian describes the medical, physical or mental condition at part 2 of form CF 1158;

2) the corps or squadron has the physical facilities and the staff required to provide cadet training in light of the medical condition or the mental or medical challenge;

3)the ability of the corps or squadron to provide effective training to other members will not be reduced; and

4) the parent or guardian and the prospective cadet are aware that minimum medical fitness standards do exist for attendance at Cadet Summer Training Centres (CSTC) and for the Exchange Programmes. The parents or guardians shall be informed that cadets with a medical condition may not be permitted to attend summer training. This fact must be clearly understood by all parties prior to accepting a person with a medical condition, or who is mentally or physically challenged as a member of a cadet corps or squadron.
4But I’m not 12 years of age yet?
You have to be at least 12 years old and under 19 to join the Cadet Program.
5What do Army Cadets do?
Army Cadets are trained in a variety of subjects, some of them are specialized to army cadets only and others are common to Sea, Army and Air Cadet programs. Below is a list of some of the activities Army Cadets can expect to encounter during their time in the program.

Army Cadet activities:

1) Expeditions

2) Navigation

3) Trekking

4) Wilderness survival

5) Outdoor leadership

6) Field training

7) Canadian Army and civilian outdoor community familiarization

Common activities:

1) General cadet knowledge

2) Drill and ceremonial

3) Leadership

4) Instructional techniques

5) Community service

6) Cultural education/travel

7) Citizenship

8) Personal fitness and healthy living

9) Recreational sports

10) Air rifle marksmanship

11) Biathlon

12) Music & military band and pipe band

13) Positive Social Relations for Youth Training
6What special oppotunities are available to Army Cadets?
All Army Cadets have the opportunity to apply for summer training courses ranging from two to six weeks in duration. There are also employment opportunities for senior cadets to work at Cadet Summer Training Centres as instructors or support staff. There are even specialized training opportunities that Army Cadets can undertake, including Basic Parachutist, Leadership and Challenge in the Canadian Rocky Mountains and the National Rifle Team.

There are international exchanges to countries such as Wales, Scotland, England, South Korea and Australia. In these exchanges cadets might participate in training with that country's Army Cadet Program or focus on exploring the many cultural and historic aspects of the host nation.

There are also national and regional expeditions where cadets spend several days doing intensive training in such activities as rock climbing, rappelling, hiking, mountain biking, canoeing and white-water rafting.
7Am I required to join the Canadian Forces?
Absolutely not. Cadets is a great way to find out more about Canada, make friends and develop new skills that will be with you for life, no matter what career you choose.