Life in the CF
From Day 1, you will enjoy a competitive salary and great benefits. But a career in the CF is so much more than making a living: it will allow you to make a difference in the world. There is no career more challenging or rewarding than serving in the Canadian Forces (CF) where you can take part in defending our country and participate in world events that will change your life and the lives of the people you are helping.
You will obtain world-class qualifications. You will gain skills and leadership that will serve you well during your career in the military. You will visit more destinations that most people will see in a lifetime and make great friends along the way. There really is no other career quite like it.
Your journey as a CF member begins in Basic Training, which lasts about three months. It will be physically demanding: you can expect to wake up early, do lots of push-ups, sit-ups, pull-ups, and to hike several kilometres. But it will make you physically and mentally fit, and you will gain a huge sense of achievement, purpose and confidence. You will then receive the training and education required for your specific job. Because you will be handling some of the world's most innovative technologies and sophisticated weaponry, we will keep providing you with plenty of opportunities for advanced training throughout your career.
Once you have been trained, you will be posted to one of our bases across Canada. You'll find bases are places of constant activity, with a huge range of social and sporting facilities to help you keep fit, relax and enjoy your life outside of working hours. Because our members and their families are our greatest asset, their quality of life is important to us; there is a Military Family Resource Centre on every base, offering a variety of programs, privileges and support groups.
Sports & Fitness
Physical fitness is an essential part of the military way of life. Healthy and physically fit sailors, soldiers, airmen and airwomen are stronger, have more energy, are more self-confident, have fewer injuries, and are better able to endure long periods of physical and mental stress. They are dependable, capable and physically ready to be deployed on short notice - the success of a mission depends on it.
From basic training and throughout your career, you should be physically fit and healthy. During basic training, you will be running, doing push-ups and crunches, and walking long distances while carrying a heavy rucksack. And afterwards, we will make it easy for you to stay fit and adopt a healthy lifestyle by providing you with:
- outstanding physical fitness and sports facilities
- physical fitness programs and qualified trainers
- participation in base, regional, national and international sports events and competitions
- physiotherapists and sports medicine specialists
- family sports and leisure activities that promote wellness
- smoking cessation and addictions-free living programs
- nutrition and weight-management programs
- stress management programs
- ... and much more.
Like sports? It's an exciting way to stay fit while making friends and developing teamwork. You could even have a chance to travel to take part in competitions.
Are you physically fit enough to join? Use these guides to find out and to help you get ready:
From the moment you enrol in the Canadian Forces, you and your family become part of the larger Canadian Forces family. Military life provides many advantages for your family, such as having opportunities to travel, being a part the Canadian Forces community and sharing your national pride together.
As is the case with any occupation, you may be concerned about the impact that a career in the military will have on your family life. As a Canadian Forces member, some of the challenges may include having to relocate your family to a different city, or being away on deployment. As such, the Canadian Forces has created numerous programs to assist families during these and other challenging times. In addition, every Canadian Forces base has a Family Resource Centre to provide services such as career counselling for spouses and daycare and recreation programs for children.
Most Canadian Forces members will be required to relocate at some point during their career. Although relocating can be a challenge, it provides your family with the opportunity to meet new people. Nothing is more important to the Canadian Forces than its members and their families. To help ease the relocation process, all necessary moving expenses will be paid for by the Canadian Forces.
Part of the excitement of a career in the Canadian Forces is participating in military deployments. Deployments can include providing humanitarian aid over the course of a few weeks or being engaged in a mission for a few months. Whatever the case, the Canadian Forces understand that deployments can be challenging for families, and have the resources in place to help. As a member of Canadian Forces, both you and your family are part of a very unique community from which you can gain additional support. The Canadian Forces community sticks together, supports each other and are stronger as a result.
Additional Services & Benefits
- Community orientation
- Low-cost access to outstanding sports and physical fitness facilities
- Diverse mix of leisure activities
- Youth services and programs
- Child care facilities and emergency child care
- Second language training for spouses
- Employment assistance for spouses
- Relocation benefits and services, and cost-of-living differential allowances
- Dependent education management program for families living abroad or moving to a different province
- Domestic travel and family-care related benefits
- Morale and psychological support: Member Assistance Program, Operational Trauma and Stress Support Centres, family separation and reunion counselling, self-help groups
- Financial services
For more information