It may be National Volunteer Week stateside, but our USO Centers in Southwest Asia are extending that celebration overseas by recognizing their volunteers, too! Here are some stories from the field…
National Volunteer Week in Full Swing at Ali Al Salem
To kick off National Volunteer Week the staff at Ali Al Salem (AAS) just so happened to be planning their quarterly volunteer recognition event. This time it was a day of fun in the sun, a pool party.
Duane DeVorak, AAS’s Volunteer Coordinator, planned the event over the past three months. “I think every USO employee knows how valuable our volunteers are. That’s why I wanted to plan something to recognize them and give back to them,” said DeVorak.
The Rock Air Force Base right next door has a swimming pool and volunteers did nothing but enjoy themselves throughout the day. “This was a much needed break from everything we have going on right now,” said Navy Petty Officer 3rd Class Kenora Drake, a USO Volunteer. “I can’t believe they did all this for us.”
“We had great food, give-a-ways and all kinds of pool toys for everyone, said Cindy Glenn, Assistant Volunteer Coordinator. “It seemed like everyone had a great time and really enjoyed themselves.” In an effort to unite the centers here in Kuwait, DeVorak invited the volunteer coordinators and the top volunteers form Camp Virginia and Camp Buehring.
[caption id=“attachment_2099” align=“aligncenter” width=“500” caption=“Volunteers from Ali Al Salem, Camp Buehring, and Camp Virginia enjoy a pool party thrown at Rock Force Air Base in honor of their efforts.”][/caption]
Baghdad USO Army and Air Force Volunteers Surpass the 150 Hour Mark!
Baghdad USO would like to congratulate SSG Shaina Newton assigned to TF28th CSH, Sather AB Iraq; her home unit is Bravo Company 28th CSH Fort Bragg, NC and her hometown is Shreveport, Louisiana. Also we would like to thank SMSgt David Sopshier assigned to 447 ELRS Sather AB Iraq; his home unit is 96 LRS Eglin AFB FL, and his hometown is Charleston, SC.
They both started volunteering in January 2010 and are eager volunteers who display a special desire and responsibility for their duties, learning new programs, and volunteering for additional tasks without hesitation. They are valued members of our USO team and consistently exceed the normal expectations. We are very proud of their work here at USO Baghdad. Check out the pictures of Shaina and Dave!
Celebrating Volunteers AND Earth Day During a Water Shortage
And finally, Baghdad SO has been experiencing a water shortage and one of its many volunteers is helping out by recycling the water that is left behind from people passing thru BIAP and we are using it to mop and keep the USO buildings clean instead of going to the faucet to fill up. Below is a picture of Youssefian Parker doing his part and he is also rapidly approaching 1000hrs as a volunteer here at BIAP. THANK YOU PARKER! [caption id=“attachment_2101” align=“aligncenter” width=“500” caption=“Volunteer Youssefian Parker helps conserve water during a shortage at BIAP.”][/caption]
More from the USO
Mar 20, 2017
Deployed Service Members ‘Break Free from Reality’ at USO Bagram's Paint and Sip Program
Before 2016, the last time Army Sgt. Derek Peterson picked up a paint brush was in high school – which, he admits, was quite a few years ago. “I would like to be [considered an artist],” Peterson said. “But I hadn’t done any real art since [then].” So, when Peterson heard about the USO Southwest Asia’s two new art programs – Paint and Sip and Art on Tap -- during a recent deployment to Kandahar, Afghanistan, he knew it was the perfect opportunity to get back to his creative roots