VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (NNS) -- Maritime Civil Affairs and Security Training (MCAST) Command welcomed the return of the Maritime Civil Affairs Unit (MCAU) and Maritime Civil Affairs Teams (MCATs) 212, 213, and 214, Sept. 13, after a more than six-month deployment to Africa in support of Combined Joint Task Force - Horn of Africa (CJTF-HOA).
The MCAU and three MCATs completed deployments as scheduled; they are the last Navy civil affairs capable teams scheduled to deploy in support of CJTF-HOA as the operational focus shifts from civil-military operations (CMO) to military-to-military training.
The three-person MCAU, based out of Camp Lemmonier, Djibouti, provided administrative assistance, support, and operational guidance to the 17 MCAST civil affairs Sailors working along the eastern coast of Africa.
"We had a good deployment and this was a good way to wrap up seven years of providing Maritime Civil Affairs (MCA) to the region," said Lt. Cmdr. Vince Prevatte, officer in charge of the MCAU. "I look forward to MCA supporting CJTF-HOA if the need arises in the future."
MCATs 212, 213, and 214, each working as five-person teams along the coast of Kenya, facilitated, supported and assessed CMO to build capability, strengthen regional relationships, promote mutual security interests, and enhance partner capacity and interoperability.
The MCATs conducted civil-military infrastructure assessments, held courses in Basic Sea Survival (BSS), organized and completed community projects, and worked with non-governmental organizations to provide enduring solutions to challenges faced by the civilian populace.
A Joint Civil Affairs Team (JCAT) consisting of two MCAST Sailors working side-by-side with U.S. Army civil affairs soldiers returned from deployment earlier this year.
An MCAT is typically a five-person unit consisting of a team commander, a coxswain, constructionman, communicator, and a corpsman. Though these skill sets are mostly derived from the appropriate U.S. Navy ratings, Sailors are cross trained prior to deployment.
MCAST provides flexible and responsive teams of U.S. Navy Expeditionary Sailors on demand to establish and enhance relations between military forces, governmental and nongovernmental organizations, and the civilian communities.
MCAST, an Echelon IV command under Navy Expeditionary Combat Command, is headquartered at Naval Air Station Oceana - Dam Neck Annex.
For more information about MCAST Command, visit www.mcast.navy.mil or www.navy.mil/local/MCAST/.