For students, visiting Vimy is a lifechanging experience.
Jocelyn Davis will never forget the emotional impact of visiting the Canadian National Vimy Memorial in France. Davis travelled there in 2013 as one of the winners of the Vimy Pilgrimage Award for students aged fourteen to seventeen. The week-long educational trip takes them to First World War sites in Belgium and France.
Davis (second from left in photo above) said walking through the trenches at the Vimy battlefield made her feel connected to the soldiers who fought there.
“To see that so many casualties were inflicted to gain so little territory — it was such a pointless war. I knew that, but it really brought it home,” said Davis, who is now twenty. “That kind of deep emotional connection I felt bridged the century between those men and me.”
The Vimy Pilgrimage Award is one of two scholarship programs offered annually by the Vimy Foundation. The award recognizes “the actions of young people who demonstrate outstanding service, positive contributions, notable deeds, bravery or leadership.” Applicants must write a five-hundred-word letter outlining the reasons why they are worthy of the award.