The Canadian War Museum in Ottawa

Canadian War Museum seeks "to honour veterans and raise awareness of their sacrifices" as Centenary approaches

Posted on centenarynews.com on 10 November 2013
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The Canadian War Museum in Ottawa launches its fifth year of Operation Veteran today, in order to "honour veterans and raise awareness of their sacrifices" and plans to expand the programme for the Centenary.

As part of Operation Veteran, students from across the country will visit the Canadian War Museum today, Remembrance Sunday 2013.

Operation Veteran was founded in 2009 by Dr. Paul Kavanagh, in association with the Canadian War Museum, to provide complimentary meals to veterans visiting the Museum.

The initiative expanded to bring high school students from across Canada to Ottawa for Remembrance Day. They spend time with veterans and "learn firsthand about the sacrifices made by those who have served this country, then go home to tell their fellow students what they’ve learned".

Centenary expansion

Operation Veteran will be expanding in order to mark the First World War Centenary in 2014.

Supply Line, a "hands-on classroom experience" will see "travelling trunks" from the War Museum containing both authentic and reproduction materials from the First World War visit schools across Canada.

Beginning in September 2014, Supply Lines will "allow young people to see, touch and understand the past".

James Whitham, Director General of the Canadian War Museum, said that Supply Line and the Canadian War Museum’s expanded online resources will "help Operation Veteran engage even more students from across Canada in remembrance”. 

Dr. Kavanagh, who founded Operation Veteran, highlighted the "enormous contribution [in] serving our country and the entire world" made by Canadian veterans, and that now "it's our turn to serve them".

"By providing meals to our veterans, and offering educational programmes so young people can better understand our military history, we demonstrate respect and help perpetuate the memory of their invaluable contribution".

Dr. Kavanagh was inspired to found Operation Veteran in 2009 following an encounter in the Canadian War Museum’s cafeteria, where he saw a Second World War veteran who did not have enough money to pay for soup and a coffee.

Soon after, Dr. Kavanagh approached the War Museum with an offer to ensure that veterans would receive a complimentary meal at the Museum on Remembrance Day.

In 2010, thanks to fundraising efforts by schools and contributions by private donors, the programme was extended to every day the Museum is open. To date, veterans visiting the Canadian War Museum have received more than 4,500 free meals.

Source: Canadian War Museum press release

Images courtesy of the Canadian War Museum website

Posted by: Daniel Barry, Centenary News