Attend our first annual First Nations Veterans Gathering!
Join us for a special Veterans Gathering on Monday, November 27th, 2023, at the Hilton Winnipeg Airport Suites to celebrate and honour our Veterans’ contributions, and guide the development of our new SCO Veterans Program.
For more information and to register visit our event page here.
The First Nations Veterans Program at SCO is deeply committed to recognizing and honouring the service of First Nations Veterans, all while providing the assistance Veterans need to thrive in their communities.
We invite First Nations Veterans in Manitoba to connect with us, join our community, and let us help you in your journey to a fulfilling post-service life.
If you are a First Nation Veteran in need of support, know someone who is, or if you want to learn more about our program, please contact our Veterans Program Coordinator.
Toll free at 1-866-876-9701
By First Nation Veterans, For First Nation Veterans
The First Nations Veterans Program is a new initiative established to address the specific needs of First Nation Veterans in Manitoba. We believe that the most effective support for our Veterans comes from those who have walked a similar path. Our program is designed by First Nation Veterans, for First Nation Veterans, and is continuously evolving as we listen and recognize the needs voiced within our First Nation Veteran community.
What Our Program Offers:
We provide a range of services to support First Nations Veterans in Manitoba, including:
- Assistance with Veterans Affairs Claims: We understand the complexities of Veterans Affairs claims and can offer guidance and support to ensure our Veterans receive the benefits and services they rightfully deserve.
- Traditional Healing Support: We acknowledge the importance of cultural and spiritual healing in our community. We offer access to traditional healing support services to address the unique needs of our Veterans.
- Connecting with Fellow First Nation Veterans: Our program facilitates connections between First Nations Veterans, fostering a strong and supportive community where Veterans can share their experiences, challenges, and celebrate their successes.
Meet Our First Nation Veterans Coordinator
A Brief History of First Nations Veterans in Canada
Since time immemorial, First Nations have been the protectors and warriors of our lands, waters, and people. When called to serve by our Treaty partner Canada, our citizens have always risen to the challenge. This has resulted in a rich and complex history of First Nations military service in what is now Canada. From World War I to present-day deployments, our ancestors and citizens have made significant sacrifices to protect the values and freedoms of our relatives and all other Canadians, standing strong for values like diversity and inclusion.
Despite these contributions, First Nations Veterans have often encountered discrimination and distinct challenges in their post-service lives. This includes historical discrimination such as the loss of their First Nations Status as a requirement to serve in the forces, and after lengthy deployments away from home due to government of Canada policies under the Indian Act. It also includes current challenges like navigating the Veterans Affairs system, securing stable housing, accessing traditional healing support, and connecting with like-minded First Nations Veterans who understand their unique experiences.
Justin Woodcock is a proud First Nation Veteran with eight years of dedicated service in the Canadian Armed Forces. As a First Nation Veteran, he understands the unique challenges and contributions that Veterans have experienced throughout their military careers and beyond. Justin is honoured to serve as the First Nations Veterans Coordinator at SCO and lead our efforts to support and honour our Veterans.
Check out our Veterans Wall of Honour here!
Do you know a Veteran that you would like to honour? Email their photo, name, and background information to firstname.lastname@example.org!