USS John Paul Jones recently became Partners In Education (PIE) with Silver Strand Elementary School. Kelly Donahue, School Military Liaison Officer, assisted with the partnership. Approximately eighty-five percent of the student body is a son or daughter of a Sailor or Marine stationed here in San Diego.
This partnership provides USS John Paul Jones sailors the opportunity to interact with students in grades k-5. Sailors will have the chance to assist Silver Strand Elementary in a number of ways such as with campus improvement projects, volunteering in classrooms, school events and extracurricular activities such as school clubs and as Everyone a Reader Tutors.
“Community service improves the moral of military personnel because it gives a lot of us the opportunity to step out and do something different other than our day to day duties. It gives us a sense of pride and accomplishment to see the smiles on individuals faces from our help and assistance” said IT1(SW/AW) Edward E. Fair.
Thus far, USS John Paul Jones Sailors assisted Silver Strand Elementary by collecting and donating basic school supplies, providing tutors for the after school homework sessions, helping out with the school’s Jog-A-Thon, where the sailors did PT with the students, and also career day, in which three Sailors were sent to speak about the Navy and the importance of succeeding in school. Additionally, Sailors participated in the school’s Veterans Day event by serving snacks, taking photos and collecting names to be featured in the schools newsletter.
“I believe that community service is very important for our Navy Sailors because it sets a positive military presence in the local community. Not only does it build a better relationship with civilians and families, it also allows for more interaction and understanding of what the military is all about, not only fighting wars but helping the community and showing that we care” noted Petty Officer First Class Fair.
USS John Paul Jones is working closely with the principal, Mr. Cass, and his staff to generate more opportunities Sailors to participate in this year.