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Forward Operating Location Camalapa Visits School in El Salvador

Navy NewsStand

Story Number: NNS070921-09
Release Date: 9/21/2007 4:02:00 PM

From Forward Operating Location Comalapa Public Affairs

COMALAPA, El Salvador (NNS) -- Sailors from Forward Operating Location (FOL) Comalapa participated in a community relations project Sept. 11 at the Salamar School, beginning their third year of working with the school.

The school was adopted by the command in the fall of 2005 when it sponsored its first project there. The school has morning and afternoon sessions comprised of 200 students each. FOL personnel donated funds which provided for needed classroom, plumbing and recreational supplies.

Sailors picked up several bags of trash and debris from the school's yard and soccer field. Volunteers also applied a fresh coat of paint inside and out on two restroom facilities, a sheltered lunch break area, and the school's goal posts on their soccer field. They installed two new basketball backboards, rims and nets and donated five basketballs to break in the court, as well as five soccer balls to be used on the cleaned up soccer field.

The 18 participants were mostly FOL personnel, but included two Sailors currently deployed with Patrol Squadron 45 at the FOL. Volunteers donated plumbing supplies to provide the piping needed to connect the restroom facilities with running water. The local Salvadoran Air Force, which shares the base with FOL Comalapa personnel, provided the plumbers for the installation.

"It was great to see everyone work together for such a worthy cause and I know the children really appreciate what we have done for them, I can't wait to go back to work on another project," said Utilitiesman 2nd Class Joseph Rubino, who coordinated the project.

The Sailors spent over six hours completing the project and came away with a great sense of pride and accomplishment.

"I have wanted to do this for a while and the expression on the faces of the children said it all," said Master-at-Arms 2nd Class Tarah Musbach said.

FOL’s Comalapa, a unit of U.S. Naval Forces Southern Command, supports aerial counter-narcotics and promotes theater security cooperation in the El Salvador area. Their mission includes military-to-military contact with host nation’s military forces, information sharing, and events that enhance interoperability. These units perform counter-narcotics missions for the Joint Inter-Agency Task Force South.

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