One of the biggest events in EF history, the Vimy 100th Anniversary Tour will welcome thousands of Canadians to northern France in April 2017. To learn about what’s happening behind the scenes as the EF team prepares, we sat down with Johann Fulks, Director of Operations, for a few updates on what’s to come.
What’s on the go for the operations team: A lot of things are happening on the ground. I just got back from Rome last week, where I was training some of our Tour Directors. In fact, we’re recruiting Tour Directors from our six regional offices in Europe – Rome, Madrid, Paris, Lucerne, Athens and London for the many tours we’ll be running. We’re also getting staffing and volunteer lists and training ready for the big day.
The biggest item on my to-do list: Right now, the real focus is ensuring capacity for all of our tours. With thousands of EF travellers in northern France next April, we have been working for the past 18 months to source the best hotels, caterers and restaurants for everyone. Another thing we’re doing is working alongside industry experts, the French and Canadian governments, Veterans Affairs Canada and specialized security consultants to solidify our comprehensive safety strategy for the whole event.
What travelers can expect at Vimy 100: After meeting with so many of them, I can say that our Tour Directors are really looking forward to connecting with students. They’ll be drawing connections between modern-day Canada, the 150th anniversary of Canada in 2017, and the Vimy 100 event itself. We’re also working with our educational partners and providers on the ground, so you may be able to experience more than just a ‘standard’ visit to popular attractions, with themes that connect to the overall message of Vimy.
Being a part of history: It’s hugely exciting to be a part of Vimy 100. We’ve never done anything on such a large scale before. We’ve established a lot of ‘firsts’ in the process of working on this event. I’m confident in the strength of our team and the partners we’re working with. For sure, there’s a lot to do between now and April 9th, but we’re on a good trajectory. We’re staying tenacious and disciplined to get it all done, and we’re excited to make this event one of the best we’ve ever put on!
Help your students appreciate what it means to be Canadian. Learn more about EF’s Historic Event Tours.