More than 150 Canadian soldiers have paid the ultimate sacrifice since the Canadian Forces entered Afghanistan in 2002, and many more have been severely injured in body, heart and mind.
TransCanada Corporation believes that the members of the Canadian Forces, past and present, deserve our gratitude, dedication and support, to not only help Canadians remember the sacrifices they gave and continue to give, but also to remove barriers as they transition back to civilian life.
Based on this vision, TransCanada actively sought out like-minded partners who shared similar values and passion to support our returning troops. We found those partners in various places, including the building and construction industry, the federal government and the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra.
To commemorate the end of Canada’s military mission in Afghanistan, and to celebrate the commitment of our troops, the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra, with support from TransCanada, commissioned two Canadian artists — war poet Suzanne Steele and composer Jeffrey Ryan — to create a distinctly Canadian War Requiem.
The world premiere of Afghanistan: Requiem for a Generation was performed on Nov. 10, 2012, at EPCOR Centre’s Jack Singer Concert Hall in Calgary. The haunting symphony serves as a monument to the lives lost and sacrifices made by our Canadian soldiers, sailors, airmen and airwomen through music and visual presentation, featuring Canadian war art and imagery.
“Partnering with the CPO was a natural fit for TransCanada because it builds on our existing support for our military veterans, as well as currently serving members of the Canadian Forces and their families, through the Helmets to Hardhats Canada program,” says Sean McMaster, TransCanada’s executive vice-president, stakeholder relations and general counsel. “Our partnership with Helmets to Hardhats is a logical extension of our relationship with Canada’s Building Trades Unions helping to build our country and its infrastructure.”
In January 2012, the Helmets to Hardhats Canada initiative launched with $1-million in support from TransCanada. The program helps Canadian Forces members and retired military veterans transition from active service to civilian life and careers in the construction industry. An initiative between the Government of Canada, Veteran Affairs Canada, Canada’s Building Trades Unions, TransCanada and other stakeholders, the program offers access to career and apprenticeship information and opportunities through dedicated staff. Canadian Forces members and retired military veterans will have access to these apprenticeship programs and related training on a priority basis through participating construction trade organizations and contractors. The program will also provide opportunities in administration, engineering, human resources and other skills required in today’s economy.
“We are proudly supporting men and women who have served their country with bravery and honour,” McMaster says. “This initiative will not only assist members of the Canadian Forces and retired military veterans in their return to civilian life, but will also bring much-needed skilled and dedicated talent into our workforce.”
As a former Canadian army tank commander, McMaster is one of the many former Canadian soldiers who have found second careers at TransCanada. He knows the value that military training can bring to the private sector.
“When you hire someone with a military background, you know you are getting somebody that has the responsibility, maturity and leadership skills to succeed,” he says. “You learn so much about yourself and what you can handle, under any situation”.
TransCanada’s role in Helmets to Hardhats Canada is consistent with our values-driven approach to business and our aim to build healthy, safe and vibrant communities where our employees live and work. The military values — leadership, duty, respect, selfless service and honour — directly align with TransCanada’s core values of integrity, collaboration, innovation, and responsibility. Tim Gewert, senior human resources consultant at TransCanada explains: “We treat each other, our customers, governments, and other stakeholders with honesty and respect. We demonstrate high ethical standards in everything we do. We keep our promises and commitments.”
Anchored by these values, our military members, veterans and TransCanada employees are well on their way to the pursuit of personal and professional excellence.
For more information on Helmets to Hardhats, and to start your career search visit: HelmetsToHardhats.ca