Navy Seabees Partner With Peruvian Sailors To Renovate Elementary School
By Dialogo December 14, 2010
Naval Mobile Construction Battalion (NMCB) 28 Detail Bravo partnered with sailors from the Peruvian navy to build a classroom at Elias Aguirre Romero Elementary School in Ventanilla, Peru, in support of Southern Partnership Station (SPS) 2011.
The 19-man reserve battalion joined five U.S. Marine engineers to work hand-and-hand with Peruvian sailors in performing every aspect of the developmental process for the 16-by-32-foot structure, which will be used as a classroom for four-year olds.
“The teamwork and information sharing being displayed here is phenomenal,” said Chief Builder Fernando Labrada. “We are learning from one another and working toward a common goal, which will ultimately benefit the children who attend this school, and that’s a win-win for everyone.”
The week-long project allowed for both parties to exchange and demonstrate their skills in aspects of engineering ranging from electrical, structural and mechanical.
“It’s going pretty good because we’re able to teach them, and they’re able to teach us some things as well,” said Builder 2nd Class Danny Shannon. “I’ve learned that even though there is a language and cultural barrier, we use the same techniques and procedures for doing our jobs.”
The potential language barrier was easily avoided because several members of the NMCB 28 team are fluent in Spanish.
“It’s been a seamless integration with our Peruvian partners in accomplishing this mission,” said Labrada. “We’re able to operate at an extremely high level without losing any critical information in the translation process, because we’re prepared and committed to strengthening our working relationship with the Peruvian government and military.”
“Seeing our sailors work side-by-side with U.S. Sailors and Marines feels good,” said Peruvian Lt. Cristian Arbayza Avalos, civil engineer core officer. “It shows unity and is good for everyone, especially the children at Elias Aguirre Romero Elementary School.”
The two-man Navy security training team will be participating in a variety of subject matter expert exchanges and information sharing ventures with partner nations during their five-month deployment to six countries in support of SPS 11.