Seabees build furniture for local community development center

By Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Jonathan Carmichael 
131230-N-UH337-032 BALBALA, Djibouti (Dec. 30, 2013) Equipment Operator 3rd Class Jared A. Wygant, from Angola, N.Y., assigned to Naval Mobile Construction Battalion (NMCB) 11, hands a bench to Army Capt. Jackson Hau and Spc. Chad Welch with the 443rd Civil Affairs Battalion.  The bench is among multiple sets of desks and benches constructed by the Seabees and will be delivered to a local community center for children to use.  NMCB-11 is a Seabee battalion currently deployed to multiple locations in support of U.S. Africa Command, U.S. European Command, U.S. Central Command and U.S. Pacific Command areas of responsibility.  (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Jonathan Carmichael / Released)

131230-N-UH337-032 BALBALA, Djibouti (Dec. 30, 2013) Equipment Operator 2nd Class Jared A. Wygant, from Angola, N.Y., assigned to Naval Mobile Construction Battalion (NMCB) 11, hands a bench to Army Capt. Jackson Hau and Spc. Chad Welch with the 443rd Civil Affairs Battalion. The bench is among multiple sets of desks and benches constructed by the Seabees and will be delivered to a local community center for children to use. NMCB-11 is a Seabee battalion currently deployed to multiple locations in support of U.S. Africa Command, U.S. European Command, U.S. Central Command and U.S. Pacific Command areas of responsibility. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Jonathan Carmichael / Released)

CAMP LEMONNIER, Djibouti — Seabees assigned to Naval Mobile Construction Battalion (NMCB) 11 delivered 10 desks and 10 benches to Balbala Commune in Djibouti, Dec. 30, 2013 for use by orphaned children at the Balbala Community Development Center.

The furniture was constructed by Builder 3rd Class Sara K. Parcher, from Jamestown, Pa., Steelworker 3rd Class Kenneth J. Lancaster, from Pensacola, Fla., and Builder 3rd Class Jackie J. Watkins, from Gulfport, Miss.  Watkins was not available to assist with the delivery, but Equipment Operator 2nd Class Jared A. Wygant, from Angola, N.Y. filled in and drove the truck full of furniture to Balbala.

The delivery was coordinated by U.S. Army Capt. Jackson Hau with 443rd Civil Affairs Battalion with Balbala Commune President Youssouf Hassan Nouho.

Balbala Commune is home to some of Djibouti’s poorest citizens with little more than their dirt floors to sit on.  It took little more than two days for the Seabees to build the desks and benches, but the Balbala Community Development Center should get years of use out of them.

The Naval Construction Force is a vital component of the U.S. Maritime Strategy. They offer deployable battalions capable of providing contingency construction, disaster preparation and recovery support, humanitarian assistance, and combat operations support.

With its home-port in Gulfport, Miss., NMCB-11 is currently deployed to multiple locations in support of U.S. Africa Command, U.S. European Command, U.S. Central Command, and U.S. Pacific Command areas of responsibility.