Women have long had a quiet, less visible presence in the firearms community. While women lead the industry in growth, both in the hunting and sport shooting genres, women's programs have been noticeably absent in our community at large.
The CCFR introduced a Women of the CCFR program nearing the end of 2015 and to date we have implemented 9 ladies events, from range days to a guided goose hunt. The program is headed up by Kelly Wheaton, VP of Women's Programming and a Project Mapleseed instructor with a passion for introducing new female shooters to the shooting sports. "Women are more open to trying something that may have been intimidating before, when introduced to it by another woman. Our ladies events have evolved into the most epic girls day out type of events ever", said Wheaton.
The CCFR employs the only full-time, in-house registered lobbyist specializing solely on firearms issues in Canada, also a woman. "The ladies day events have been hugely successful and we get a ton of requests and inquiries asking when the next one is", said lobbyist Tracey Wilson from Ottawa.
Here are some great moments caught on camera from various Ladies Range days across the country:
The CCFR recently launched a fun, creative contest aimed at getting more women out to try hunting. Provincial Coordinator Kelly Kincaid took the all-female contest winners out for a day of goose hunting where they learned to use goose calls, use a blind, how to effectively use decoys and eventually shoot and clean their own birds! "The ladies loved hunting geese and we had a fantastic time, looking forward to next year to do it again", said Kincaid
Through fundraising projects like the upcoming 2018 CCFR Gunnie Girl Calendar these programs will continue to grow and evolve across the country. Getting these every day Canadian women out to enjoy the shooting sports can only help increase our positive image as a community.
All of these great events in a short 20 months thanks to our volunteer team, fundraising, sponsors and donations from people just like you!! This program will only improve more with the CCFR's ground-breaking growth.