GRANDE DOUDA, Djibouti (NNS) -- Sailors from Naval Mobile Construction Battalion (NMCB) 11 Detachment (Det.) Horn of Africa (HOA), of Gulfport, Miss., participated in a cultural celebration at the Ecole de Douda Primary School, April 2.
The school held the celebration to welcome the spring season in Djibouti to signal the beginning of the school's spring break.
NMCB 11 began facility additions at the school in February and installed a 1,500-liter water storage tank. The crew is currently building a new dining facility to help enhance cleanliness at the school.
With the crew of seven Seabees working six days a week at the school, the faculty wanted to thank the crew by inviting them to the celebration, according to Moussa Guedi Idriss, Ecole de Douda fifth grade teacher.
"Americans help and always do anything for the school we ask," explained Idriss. "And we are friends, we wanted them here today."
"[The teachers] asked us to join them the day before the event, and we decided to share something with them," explained Builder 2nd Class Randall Davis, project crew leader. "I brought in some of my wife's homemade cookies she sends me, and the crew brought in other snacks and drinks."
"The sharing of cultures is an example of the positive relationship Americans are building with Djiboutians," said Idriss. "Davis and I are friends and [because of that] he helped us."
The crew took a break from their work day and watched the students sing, dance and laugh on their last day of school.
NMCB 11 Det. HOA is currently on a six-month deployment, working in four separate countries in the Combined Joint Task Force-Horn of Africa (CJTF-HOA) area of operations.
The service members of CJTF-HOA, headquartered in Djibouti, employ an indirect approach to counter violent extremism. Through a strategy of cooperative conflict prevention the task force helps build the internal capacities of countries at risk to prevail against extremists exploiting instability.
For more news from Naval Mobile Construction Battalion 11, visit www.navy.mil/local/nmcb11/.