Children Learn What It's Like for Parents in the Navy
By Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Paula Ludwick,
CORONADO, Calif. – Naval Surface Forces (SURFOR) hosted a “Bring Your Kids to Work” day and Wellness Fair for 65 children of staff members Aug. 6 so children could share in the pride of their Navy parent’s lives and get a glimpse of what it’s like to have a job that protects the nation.

“It was great to see the staff interacting with their families in a Navy environment,” said Vice Adm. D.C. Curtis, Commander, SURFOR. “When parents are at work all day, it is hard for children to realize or understand what their parents do while away from home. Events that we host like “Bring Your Kids to Work Day” help them understand their parent’s work, and discover that their parents are mentors – they learn to be proud of the sacrifices their mom or dad makes for our Nation.”

The SURFOR First Class Petty Officer Association spent two months planning the event. Emulating their parents and the physical training (PT) they require to keep up with a Navy career, the day started with a 30-minute children’s version of PT – they learned not only that their parents work hard at their desks and when at sea, but also that keeping fit is a healthy lifestyle choice overall.

“Physical fitness is important for the children of today knowing how to keep strong for tomorrow – they are our future leaders,” said Chief Select Storekeeper Christopher Okimura, who led the exercise session. “With the children running around and exercising, it was part of keeping the day fun,” he added.

After exercising, the group went on a tour of the SURFOR headquarters stopping to look into vehicles used by the Navy in battle: the Humvee and Lighter Amphibious Resupply Cargo five-ton truck.

Storekeeper 1st Class Tiajuana Hill, who helped plan the day and lead the tour said, “Events like this are a great way for military children get to meet each other, socialize and build friendships.”

The afternoon was primarily set aside for the kids to be with their parents and see what they did at work, but there was also face painting, learning how to tie sea knots and a Wellness Fair.

The Wellness Fair was coordinated by the SURFOR medical department and included a blood drive and reinforced that a healthy lifestyle should be a priority for all. The blood drive helped the Armed Forces Blood Program add 19 pints of blood to their inventory, which will be used at military facilities worldwide.

“My two daughters really enjoyed their time here and learned something about the Navy’s important work along the way,” said Capt. Barry White, SURFOR’s Assistant Chief of Staff for Aviation Matters.

Certificates of appreciation signed by the Commanding Officer of Troops, Lt. Cmdr. Gil Nicdao, were handed out to each little future Sailor, Commander or one-day Admiral.
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