OP FAUST Cancellation
Dear Members of our RCLS and RCEME Corps team and Participants in the Op FAUST 2020 75th Anniversary of the Liberation of the Netherlands.
Given the unfolding global situation regarding COVID-19 and the direction emanating from our government, other national governments and our CAF Leadership we have made the difficult decision to cancel Op FAUST 2020 for this year. We are currently working with the travel agent to attempt to recover as much of our investment as possible while noting that there have already been some expenditures in support of the trip that cannot be reimbursed.
For those of you that have purchased private Trip Cancellation Insurance, for those who have not, and for our serving members, Regular, Reserve and Civilian component; we will shortly publish direction on how best to pursue any potential re-imbursement. It is best that we do this as a group, to make sure maximum benefit for all of us can be derived from this tragic circumstance beyond our control. Thank you for understanding, and if you can identify your situation to me through the chain of command, that would be best.
For our RCLS and RCEME Corps participants we are hoping that we can resurrect Op FAUST for 2021 knowing full well that there will be challenges encountered – some units may not wish to participate in 2021, individual participants may be promoted, posted or unable to participate due to operations etc.
Nevertheless, we do feel that we can accomplish in 2021 much of what we had planned for 2020. Again our goal is to allow our sailors, soldiers and aviators to experience the incredible legacy of our predecessors who served so gallantly and courageously in northwest Europe in support of 1st Canadian Army, and the efforts to save the starving civilian population. Plus we and our Dutch colleagues will still celebrate the Liberation of Holland in various ceremonies and memorial tributes one year later.
On an optimistic note – perhaps there may even be more units or individual who might wish to join us in 2021. We are currently not sure of when the Dutch government might make a decision on cancellation or delay of their current plans but it was considered wise to make our decision now to allow the travel agency the greatest flexibility in recovering costs and to eliminate any uncertainly in the minds of our participants.
I realize that there will be some issues with regard to donations – corporate and individual and with funds raised by units. Once we have a sense of what the reimbursement situation looks like we will then begin an assessment of how to address these donated funds. At present we do not have a clear picture of exactly how this will unfold but whatever does occur it will be done with full transparency and with input from all impacted organizations and individuals.
This cancellation is made with great sadness but hopefully all will understand the magnitude of the current global climate and that cancellation was the prudent decision. Everyone should also be aware that before this decision was made our team consulted broadly with other military organizations who are also impacted by COVID-19 pandemic. We are all proceeding along the same path with the same challenges going forward.
Once again – I wish you and your families continued good health and safe conduct in whatever situations you find yourself.
Should you have any specific questions I would make every effort to answer or respond with whatever information I have available at the time.
John B. Page, CD, PLog