Atlético Ottawa Host Canada’s Veterans

On September 13th, Coding for Veterans hit the soccer pitch when Atlético Ottawa hosted Armed Forces Appreciation Night.

Before the capital’s soccer team took on the Pacific FC, there was a ceremony to honour the heroism, sacrifice, and service of members of the Canadian Armed Forces. The event was also a fundraiser for Support Our Troops Canada, the official charity of the Canadian forces that helps service members and their families with the difficulties of military life, from sending military kids to summer camp to providing scholarships, emergency financial aid, and medical support.

Background on Coding for Veterans (C4V)

Canadian Forces soldiers and veterans go through a lot in their careers. Unlike most jobs, being posted to the other side of the country or the other side of the world on deployment is a real possibility.

When veterans leave the military, they often have a hard time transitioning back to the civilian side of life, especially if they’ve been in the service for an extended period or have worked in specific trades in the Canadian Armed Forces, like combat arms, that don’t always transfer over well to civilian life.

Technology is one thing that never slows down, even when troops are deployed or in training; almost all today rely on coding. A cornerstone of our world, its an essential skill whose demand is only growing as more industries that would never be associated with computing become associated with computer and internet-based technologies; from local coffee shops to farming to medical devices, coded tech is everywhere.

New software is being created all the time that requires training to produce. Coding for Veterans (C4V) sees the potential of Veterans, Canadian Armed Forces Reservists, military family members, and our allied Afghan Interpreters who have resettled in Canada for the innovation economy.

This month, C4V hit a significant milestone — its 500th student entered their program, entering a vigorous six-month program that teaches all the fundamentals of coding so that program attendees can pursue a job in IT.

The program is run in association with the University of Ottawa and takes place over the course of six months. Students receive a certificate from the PDI, along with industry-recognized qualifications.

At the end of the program, Coding for Veterans helps students find job placement opportunities “The University of Ottawa is extremely proud of the work it has been doing with Coding for Veterans to create value and opportunities for our Canadian veterans” says Serge Blais, Executive Director of the Ottawa Professional Development Institute. “Graduates of the  C4V program have consistently reported on the immediate impact that the program has had on their careers.”

Teaching veterans to code isn’t the only way the group shows its appreciation for Canadian Forces personnel and veterans.

While Atlético Ottawa ended up having a draw match with the Pacific FC, the clear winners of the game were the veterans of their Canadian Armed Forces and their families, who got a night of well-deserved appreciation and respect, as well as Support our Troops. Atlético Ottawa CEO Fernando López remarked, “This event is not only about celebrating soccer but also about paying tribute to our real-life heroes.”

C4V Executive Director Jeff Musson commented, “It is a special collaboration to honour and show appreciation to our Canadian Armed Forces members who continue to shape our future.” Musson also spoke about what the appreciation night was about, “it’s all about supporting our military personnel, veterans, and their families.”

While the Military Appreciation Night may have passed, you can still support our troops by donating at

If you or someone you know is a veteran, a military family member, or another qualified group, you can apply for the next semester of Coding for Veterans at