Adventures in Citizenship Program

In 1951, The Rotary Club of Ottawa established its annual "Adventures in Citizenship" Program in which some 220 senior high school students from across Canada, spent four days in Ottawa experiencing tours, lectures, discussions and social events designed to enhance their understanding and appreciation of Canadian citizenship. Public figures including former Governor General, Adrienne Clarkson, the Right Hon. Joe Clark, and the Hon. Ed Broadbent participated in the program as students. 

This annual event provides a unique opportunity for a selected group of young Canadians to come together to gain a better understanding of our country. Through meetings with political leaders, senior officials, and others, they learn a great deal about the workings of our democratic institutions. 

It poses questions to the participants concerning the ethical and moral dimensions of citizenship in a rapidly changing world. It challenges participants to consider how a country as large and diverse as Canada can foster amongst its citizens a sense, not only of the rights and responsibilities of citizenship, but also commitment to the values we hold as Canadians.  

The program provides a unique opportunity for participants to meet their peers from every part of Canada, and to discuss and debate with them issues facing Canada today.  It also gives participants the opportunity to see "behind-the-scenes" at many of our National institutions, an opportunity that is usually not available to either visitors or residents of the National Capital Region.  A unique component of the program is the billeting of participants with host families. The participants can expect to return home tired, thrilled by the experience, with many new friends, and often with their assumptions about Canada significantly changed.

AIC this year will extend over three days. It will feature the high-quality speakers and guests that have been the hallmark of the program, and we will be running an essay contest with cash prizes for the winners. An online social event is also being organized.

We urge you to advise your clubs and prospective participants of the 2023 plan, and we ask you to share these early details:

Inclusive Cost: $395/participant
Registration dates: to be determined

Students considered for this opportunity must be in Grade 11 or 12.


Selection Criteria

  • ​Excellent academic standing
  • Leadership ability
  • ​Community service, with an emphasis on non-school related volunteering
  • ​A personal interview with a panel of Rotarians
  • ​Canadian citizen or landed immigrant between the ages of 16 and l8.
  • ​​​​Willing to prepare a short essay (approx. 250 words) or a 30-90 second creative video on “What does being a Canadian citizen mean to you? 


For further information please see: