SOUTH CHINA SEA (NNS) -- Sailors assigned to the Carl Vinson Carrier Strike Group took part in community service events during a recent port visit to Singapore.
Sailors joined the Singapore community in donating their time at Child at 11th Street, Willing Hearts Food Kitchen and a food bank.
Events like these, which call upon Sailors to interact with members of the local community, sort pallets of food, do general chores, and serve food to the less fortunate are examples of how Team Vinson Sailors are helping strengthen the relationships with partner and ally nations while visiting foreign ports.
"When we go to a food bank or a soup kitchen, we are really helping them solve some of their problems and bearing with them some of the burden they bear," said Cmdr. Jamie Stall-Ryan, a Navy chaplain assigned to USS Carl Vinson (CVN 70). "It builds trust between the parties and brings us together."
Stall-Ryan said Sailors help strengthen the bonds between the Navy and host nations by interacting with the local communities and helping where they can.
"The cornerstone of community [service] in foreign ports is to show our host nations we are also their friends," said Stall-Ryan.
Community service events also allow Sailors to interact with their local hosts, says Religious Programs Specialist 2nd Class Edrick Hogan.
"Oftentimes, there is a misconception that the Navy is only a warfighting machine, but events like these show that Sailors are human and care about the lives of those in nations we visit," said Hogan, a community outreach event coordinator aboard Carl Vinson. "When I see my fellow Sailors actively engaging in another culture through service, I see a bond being formed at the personal level and a building of trust in the U.S. Navy."
Hogan also said Sailors and residents of host nations benefit from events through the exchange of cultural knowledge and experiences that occur when working together.
The Carl Vinson Carrier Strike Group has participated in community service events in Guam and the Republic of Korea since the beginning of its deployment in January 2017.
The Carl Vinson Carrier Strike Group is on a regularly scheduled Western Pacific deployment as part of the U.S. Pacific Fleet-led initiative to extend the command and control functions of U.S. 3rd Fleet. U.S. Navy aircraft carrier strike groups have patrolled the Indo-Asia-Pacific regularly and routinely for more than 70 years.
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