16 years of age for selection process, 17 years of age is actual serving age
Percent of GDP
The Barbados Defence Force (BDF) is the name given to the combined armed forces of Barbados. The BDF was established August 15, 1979, and has responsibility for the territorial defence and internal security of the island. The headquarters for the Barbados Defence Force are located in the St. Ann's Fort area at The Garrison, Saint Michael.
There are three main components of the BDF:
Force Headquarters — provided administrative and logistical support for the entire force
The Barbados Regiment — this is the main land force component, and encompasses both regular and reserve units.
Barbados Coast Guard — this is the maritime element, with responsibility for patrolling Barbados' territorial waters as well as drug interdiction and humanitarian and life-saving exercises. It too encompasses both regular and reserve units.
Barbados Cadet Corp — Military youth organisation. Includes Infantry and Sea Cadets. This organisation was started in 1904. The first females joined the cadet corps in 1970s to 1980s.
The Cadet Corps has a pledge and also a song. It started with 3 normal units but today has expanded to 22. These units are grouped into Zones. There are also a band, sea cadet and medical units along with a shooting programme.
In 1981 a Cessna 402C entered service as part of the air wing.
The head of the BDF meets two US Chiefs of Staff during a visit to the island
A US Marine participates in a BDF training exercise concerning crowd control
Members of the BDF dissemble a boat engine during training exercises with the US Navy