The highly anticipated Junior Canadian Ranger (JCR) program has arrived in Inuvik.
Gail Raddi, Master Corporal for the JCR patrol, said the program will start by accepting 25
youth.

Eve Taylor, left, Gail Raddi, Derrien Firth, Jayden Clarke, Eric Kudlak, Delaney Arey, Craig Routery, and Christin Taylor show off Inuvik’s new Junior Canadian Rangers flag.
Samantha McKay/NNSL photo

“We’ve been requesting it, the youth have been requesting it,” Raddi said. “When you see other
communities doing so much with their JCRs, it just makes everyone wish we had one. Now that
we’ve got it, we’re so excited.”
Raddi said there are many activities the JCRs will be able to partake in.
“We’ll be doing a lot of different things. There’s Ranger skills, life skills, traditional skills,”
Raddi said. “There’s over 150 things that we can do so we’ll be doing a lot of training, on-the-
land skills, target shooting, cooking, and sewing.”
Craig Routery, warrant officer, said the JCR is a community-driven program supported by the
military.
“The military doesn’t actually own the program, the community owns it,” Routery said. “When it
comes to planning and organizing, the community decides what’s important for their youth to
know. That’s the strength of this program.”
Routery added that the military’s role is to provide the community with the means to put their
plans into action.
“We take away all the normal problems, like finances, because it is expensive to do a lot of this
stuff,” Routery said. “We take that burden off of their shoulders so they can just get out there
with the kids and teach them what they need to know.”
Usually, the youth will meet once a week, but Raddi said there will be longer experiential
learning opportunities.
“Sometimes they’ll have week-long events where they meet with JCRs from other communities
in one place, and we’ll all learn from each other,” Raddi said. “Senior JCRs have leaderships, so
they’ll all get together and meet in one place and share and bring stuff back to teach the younger
JCRs.”
Raddi said this is an important program for Inuvik youth.
“A lot of our youth are losing the traditional culture, so it will be good to bring a lot of the
traditional skills back because they’ll need them when they’re older,” Raddi said. “We’re pretty
excited.”
Derrien Firth is one of the youth who signed up for Inuvik’s JCR program on Saturday, Feb. 3.

He says he signed up because a friend recommended the program to him.
“I thought it was pretty cool. We might get to go to Whitehorse, meet new people,” Firth said.
It is his first time joining the Rangers and he’s most excited about learning traditional skills such
as hunting and trapping.
“It’s important to learn the skills and keep them going,” Firth said. “So I can teach my kids and
they can teach their kids.”

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