Table Top Exercise – East African partner nations test disaster response during Natural Fire 10 – US Army Africa – 091024

Table Top Exercise – East African partner nations test disaster response during Natural Fire 10 – US Army Africa – 091024
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Image by US Army Africa
www.usaraf.army.mil

East African partner nations test disaster response during Natural Fire 10

Story by Sgt. Maj. Kimberly Williams
U.S. Army Africa

ENTEBBE, Uganda – Recent natural disasters like the earthquake in Indonesia, the tsunami in Samoa and the H1N1 flu outbreak have brought home to the world that disaster response is a critical function that must be carefully planned, coordinated and conducted. During Exercise Natural Fire 10, representatives from U.S. Africa Command and other international disaster relief agencies brought many of their lessons learned to their East African partner nations in an effort to improve regional disaster response planning.

Key military and civic leaders from Burundi, Kenya, Rwanda, Tanzania and Uganda came together to take part in an table top exercise (TTX) from Oct. 17-23 simulating a natural disaster taking place in Uganda that requires regional and international support and coordination. U.S. and international facilitators from U.S. Africa Command and the Center for Disaster and Humanitarian Assistance Medicine (CDHAM) developed and designed the exercise.

The scenario used for this TTX was a complex humanitarian disaster resulting from a pandemic flu, said Navy Lt. Cmdr. Carlos Williams, director of Education and Civil-Military Medicine for CDHAM.

Pandemic flus cross all borders and can affect large populations on a national, regional and international basis, said Williams, making this the perfect scenario for a regional partnership training event.

At the heart of the exercise lies U.S. Africa Command’s focus on improving partner nation military capacity in Africa. “The participants are recognizing how their militaries fit into a complex humanitarian disaster response,” said Williams.

“The goal was to bring national and regional participants to the table to discuss how to coordinate with the military during disasters to mitigate loss of life,” he said.
“The military has a wealth of experience in planning and execution,” said Shem Amadi, director and regional advisor of the Regional Disaster Management Center of Excellence located in Nairobi, Kenya. “Given the economic fragility in the region, the military brings a reservoir of manpower and materials that can be deployed quickly until the other systems are put into place.”

During the six day exercise, participants were split into three response teams: the military response team, consisting of Ugandan and partner nations’ military participants; the national response team, consisting of Ugandan representatives from the military, National Task Force for Influenza and civil organizations like World Food Program and the World Health Organizations; and the regional/international cell, consisting of representatives from the other East African countries, and other organizations like the African Union and the Regional Disaster Management Center of Excellence.

The first three days, the participants received background information on pandemic flu, the role of various disaster organizations and the military and the four steps of the disaster cycle: preparedness, response, recovery and mitigation, said Williams.

Then, the participants separated into the three groups and role-played their responses to the simulated pandemic flu outbreak around the world, resulting in the disaster in Uganda. The groups were separated by location in Entebbe and Kampala, and all communication had to be accomplished by phone, computer or meetings, just as in real-life.

As the three groups worked through the scenario, the communication and relationship building grew stronger each day, said Williams. “Our biggest goal is to get people around the table and talk about how to save lives, and it has been amazing,” he said.

“This is a good forum to share our national plans and harmonize our actions,” said Dr. Winyi Kaboyo, assistant commissioner to the Uganda Ministry of Health and secretary to the Uganda National Task Force for Influenza. “We can then move together to combat whatever disaster falls within our region.”

“The crucial point, which was very exciting, was bringing together the military to work with civil authorities,” said Kaboyo. “We have had interactions in the past, during outbreaks like Cholera and Ebola, but they were confined to addressing public health.

“Now, the TTX has expanded cooperation to include all disasters, like floods and earthquakes. We know now who to contact in the Ministry of Defence,” he said. “I hope it will be the same with the other participating countries.”

Amadi agreed. “It was a very fulfilling experience,” he said. “It added value to disaster preparedness and response in this region.”

The partner nations weren’t the only ones learning during the TTX, said Navy Lt. Efrain Rosario, the TTX lead planner from U.S. Africa Command. “We have learned quite a bit from the Ugandans on how to respond to natural disasters. We’re taking a lot back.”

Rosario said that this is the first time that U.S. Africa Command has conducted a TTX on such a large scale, but it won’t be the last. Another TTX is currently being planned for West Africa and could involve up to seven regional partners, he said.

After all the discussions, role playing and evaluations were complete, Williams said the exercise was an unqualified success. “Our goal is to create an opportunity for our partner nations to dialogue on topics that will ultimately save lives,” he said. “That’s the most important thing.”

PHOTO CAPTION: Key military and civic leaders from Burundi, Kenya, Rwanda, Tanzania and Uganda came together to take part in an table top exercise (TTX) from Oct. 17-23 simulating a natural disaster taking place in Uganda that requires international support and coordination. The TTX, which took place in both Entebbe and Kampala, Uganda, is designed to improve regional disaster response planning. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Maj. Kimberly Williams)

Daegu Garrison hosts 8th Army Volleyball Championship at Camp Carroll

Daegu Garrison hosts 8th Army Volleyball Championship at Camp Carroll
fitness articles
Image by USAG Daegu, South Korea
DAEGU GARRISON, Republic of Korea — The Company Level, Women’s and Co-ed 8th Army 2009 Volleyball Championships were held May 15-17, 2009 at the Camp Carroll Sports and Fitness Center, Daegu Garrison. Read more…

Reunion briefings prepare Families for Soldiers’ return – FMWRC – US Army – 100819

Reunion briefings prepare Families for Soldiers’ return – FMWRC – US Army – 100819
pet health tips
Image by familymwr
www.armymwr.com

Reunion briefings prepare Families for Soldiers’ return

Aug 19, 2010

By Jennifer Hartwig (3rd Infantry Division Ft Stewart)

FORT STEWART, Ga. – Soldiers of the 3rd Infantry Division have begun to return to Fort Stewart, Hunter Army Airfield and Kelley Hill at Fort Benning, after a year-long deployment. The initial reunion is full of hugs and happiness, but learning to be a Family again takes a lot of work.

There are always questions – will my Soldier be different? Will my Soldier still love and need me? Will my Soldier want to spend more time with battle buddies than his Family? When will things feel like normal again?

Whether a Family is going through the redeployment process for the first time or the fourth time, these questions are normal and come up with each deployment, according to Linda Moseley, Stewart-Hunter Army Community Service Mobilization and Deployment Manager.

Even if you’ve been to a Family reunion briefing in the past, Moseley said it is important to attend before your Soldier returns home this time, as well.

"We’ve been through so many deployments as a division so these Families, a lot of them, have been here for quite a few deployments," Moseley said. "But I think our approach now is multi-faceted – we’re offering so many more services through the new resiliency training, the new programs that are available through ACS. We’re using other programs and services as well as re-created a series of additional programs. ‘I think before it was simply a briefing and that was it."

Moseley said that this time around, there are many topics discussed in the briefings, and programs offered by ACS, that weren’t available in previous years.

"We talk more about intimacy and the relationship; we talk more about connections and connectivity between you and your spouse; and we talk more openly and freely about household problems," she said. "In the past, we’ve addressed domestic abuse or perhaps traumatic brain injury or PTSD, but [this time] we’re making it so it’s simply understood by every Family – that if you notice a change in your Soldier or yourself, then it’s easily identifiable, and you can seek help early on."

Each unit that is deployed has or will offer 9 or10 Family reunion briefings once the unit is within the 90-day window of returning.

The briefing touches on many of the major questions people have, and gives those in attendance tips on how to make the reintegration process less problematic.

The briefing, given by Moseley or another ACS mobilization and deployment specialist, teaches Family Members to have realistic expectations about how life will be once their Soldier returns, and to talk about what your expectations are before the Soldier comes home.

"Families have to get used to each other again," Moseley said. "Expect that things will be different than they were prior to the deployment."

One spouse, who attended a Family reunion briefing, July 23, was anxious to learn what to expect when her spouse returns from their first deployment as a couple.

"We’re learning how to cope with our spouses once they get back; the dos and the don’ts," said Frankie Andrews, wife of Command Sgt. Maj. Jesse Andrews, 3rd ID command sergeant major. Though it is not Command Sgt. Maj. Andrew’s first deployment, it is the first he and Frankie have been through together. "We’re learning the different symptoms our spouse may have; how to deal with drinking, anger, dealing with their children. We (each) need to be a good, understanding spouse; we need to be patient."

The briefing deals with health issues such as post-traumatic stress disorder, substance abuse and depression, and how to recognize those symptoms in both your Soldier and yourself. Also discussed is how to deal with sharing of experiences – what do you do if your Soldier tells you too much? How do you deal with your Soldier if he or she won’t talk about their experiences at all? Moseley said that you need to work it out as a couple – discuss how much you want to know, and also realize that, though you don’t know their experiences for the past year, they don’t know yours, either. It will take time to adjust to being together day-to-day again, she said.

For those with children, ACS is offering – for the first time – child-specific programs during this time of readjustment leading up to the return of the 3rd ID Soldiers, including Sgt. Rocky’s Neighborhood, a puppet show that helps children deal with issues in an age-appropriate setting.

"We haven’t had many child-specific programs in the past, and this [redeployment] we have the Sgt. Rocky program, and for the first time we’re incorporating pets into the household," Moseley said. "A child receives and copes differently and so when we have these animated characters that come to life the parents enjoy how the material is presented and the children seem to absorb it better."

For one spouse, the topic of children was one that is especially important in her Family.

"(The topic) most important to me is I think the interaction with our Soldiers and children," said Cassandra Spaans, who has a five-year-old daughter with husband Sgt. Dean Spaans, Headquarters and Headquarters Services Company, Division Special Troops Battallion, 3rd ID. "I know how to deal with myself; sometimes you just don’t know how to deal with the emotions of the child and how they’re going to interact with the spouse and Daddy coming back."

Sergeant Spaans has been deployed for two-and-a-half of the past three years.

"This briefing isn’t just because that your spouse is coming back, it’s also giving information on how to deal with being separated for a year, and how to mold your lives back together," said Cassandra, who is the HHSC Family Readiness Group leader. "We’ve been living our separate lives, and we need to get back together, and this [briefing] is actually giving us ideas on how to do that."

Fort Stewart-Hunter Army Airfield ACS is offering workshops for the 90-, 60- and 30-day intervals before homecoming. The ACS mobilization and deployment specialists want to ensure that everyone realizes that reintegration is a process for the Family as a whole.

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Camp Humphreys readies for more troops, Families – FMWRC – US Army 100727

Camp Humphreys readies for more troops, Families – FMWRC – US Army 100727
fitness articles
Image by familymwr
PHOTO CAPTION: Families at the new U.S. Army Garrison Humphreys, South Korea, will live in modern, high-rise units convenient to schools, churches, shopping and other services. U.S. Army photo by Edward Johnson, IMCOM-K Public Affairs.

www.armymwr.com

Camp Humphreys readies for more troops, Families
Jul 27, 2010

IF you build it, they will come."

The massive military community rising from the rice paddies in South Korea dwarfs anything Kevin Costner’s character might have envisioned in the movie "Field of Dreams."

The old Camp Humphreys is transforming from a quiet aviation base off the beaten track from Pyongtaek into a major hub for U.S. forces in South Korea. It’s part of a major realignment of the 28,500 servicemembers in Korea, with nearly all of them scheduled to move south of the Han River within the next several years.

All but a tiny residual force will leave U.S. Army Garrison Yongsan, current home to U.S. Forces Korea and Combined Forces Korea in the heart of Seoul, and the 2nd Infantry Division and its supporting elements will relocate from Camp Casey and its tiny satellite bases north of the capital.

Most will consolidate at Camp Humphreys, where a U.S. military base is being built that’s unlike anything ever seen before on the Korean peninsula.

The project is moving forward, full speed ahead, Gen. Walter "Skip" Sharp, commander of U.S. Forces Korea, reported to the House Armed Services Committee in March.

"We are on track, over the next five or six years, to complete all of the construction down there," he told the panel. "We will actually start moving down there in 2012, and then phase that in over the next several years following that."

Sharp resisted setting a definitive timetable for completion, but said the effort is on the fast track.

"We’re trying to do it as quickly as possible, to be able to return this land to the Republic of Korea and to consolidate our forces to improve the quality of life for our servicemembers," he told Congress.

At Humphreys, Col. Joseph Moore, the garrison commander, gets excited talking about the enormity of the project and the unprecedented quality of life it will offer.

Initial plans called for the post’s population to more than quadruple from the current 10,000, which includes 4,200 military members and about 2,500 U.S. civilian employees, contractors and Family members. But a new dynamic added to the mix just as the relocation plan was being launched-the normalization of tours in South Korea-is expected to further increase the scope of the project, Moore said.

Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates announced in December the extension of tour lengths in Korea. Under the normalization plan, single servicemembers will serve two-year tours, and married troops who bring their Families will stay for three years.

So instead of about 1,900 Family members currently here, and about 15,000 expected to arrive as U.S. forces relocate south and more command-sponsored slots are offered, Moore estimates that the post ultimately could become home to as many as 30,000 Family members, swelling the base’s total population to more than 62,000.

Bulldozers are busy at work preparing for their arrival. The result will be a brand-new installation, unrecognizable to anyone who has served in the hodgepodge of buildings built at Humphreys over the decades to accommodate troops serving one-year, unaccompanied tours.

Seventy percent of those existing buildings will be razed, explained Todd Dirmeyer, chief master planner for the project. Replacing them will be a state-of-the-art community planned from the ground up to accommodate servicemembers and their Families. The new Humphreys complex will dwarf the current post, tripling its size to almost 3,600 acres and providing about 30 million square feet in finished building space, compared to the current 4 million.

For comparison’s sake, Fort Bliss, Texas, the U.S. installation experiencing the most growth due to base realignment and closure mandates, is adding 13 million square feet of facilities, Moore noted.

"It really is an awesome thing, if you think about it, because we are going to build a city here," he said. "This is like starting with a blank canvas that considers the whole of the property and the timing of the demolition and construction. At the end of it, we will have essentially a new installation, instead of a new one adjoined to an old one."

That new installation will provide state-of-the-art unit training, maintenance and equipment storage facilities, as well as modern housing, dining and recreational amenities, Dirmeyer said.

The plan incorporates lessons from Fort Bliss and other BRAC installations, from the multi-story post exchange that’s proven successful at Kadena Air Base, Japan, and from the transformation Moore oversaw at the Grafenwoehr Training Area in Germany.

"This represents a new vision, with efficient and thoughtful facility placement," Dirmeyer said, as he looked over a map of the post dotted with different-colored squares and rectangles representing facilities to be built.

"The maneuver and training areas designated for local training are situated away from the housing, recreational and commercial areas. The industrial areas and vehicle maintenance facilities are away from those areas," he said. "Troop housing is within walking distance of working areas. Family housing is in a commercial area, with Family-friendly facilities and schools within walking distance or an easy commute."

Barracks will be the popular "one plus one" design, in which servicemembers have private bedrooms and bathrooms, but share a common living area. A private company will pay for, build and manage most Family housing units, similar to the residential communities initiative being used at stateside posts.

A downtown shopping area, built around a food, beverage and entertainment complex, will give garrison residents a sense of Hometown USA, Dirmeyer said. An aquatics park that opened in 2006 already has proven to be a big hit, as well as the new community fitness center, affectionately called the "Super Gym."

While providing these and other quality-of-life amenities, the planners took pains to preserve green spaces. Walkways connect living and working areas, and ball fields, picnic areas and a riverfront jogging path will beckon residents outdoors.

Even with his latest challenge-accommodating an additional 15,000 Family members due to tour normalization-Moore is committed to preserving sweeping outdoor areas. "We’re looking at a lot of different options, and we have a lot of ideas," he said. "What we don’t want is to sacrifice what is really a great plan by plugging additional buildings in almost randomly."

As these final decisions are made, Humphreys is buzzing with construction activity.

Eighteen construction projects, with a contract value of .2 billion, already are under way on the existing post. Another 57 projects are in the planning and design process.

Meanwhile, a massive effort is under way to build up the rice paddies surrounding the post to accommodate the new construction. The land needs to be built up almost 15 feet to bring it above the 50-year flood plain, Moore said.

That, Dirmeyer explained, takes a lot of dirt.

"On a busy day this summer, you would see upward of 3,000 vehicles in a single day, bringing dirt in here," he said. "If you took all the mileage from the first truck to the very last truck required to do this land expansion, it would equal 17 round-trips to the moon. And if you took all the fill, it would fill the Hoover Dam." As the land is built up, giant piles are being driven into the ground to provide a stable building site.

As the planning and building processes take place, Moore said, the biggest challenge is ensuring it never interferes with the U.S. mission here.

"My first goal is to support General Sharp’s first priority: to be prepared to fight tonight," he said. "So everything we do has to be connected to that first goal. We cannot do something that would interrupt a unit’s ability to do its mission."

The effort here also supports Sharp’s priority of strengthening the U.S.-South Korea alliance because of the cooperative way it’s being planned, funded and built, Moore said.

Moore said he’s particularly proud of the quality-of-life improvements the new U.S. Army Garrison Humphreys will provide U.S. servicemembers and their Families, fulfilling Sharp’s third command priority.

Ultimately, Moore said he expects Humphreys to be the assignment of choice for U.S. forces, who will come to see it as the best place to serve in South Korea.

"This ought to sell itself. We ought not have to sell Humphreys," he said. "If we do it well, it will sell itself, and servicemembers will tell other servicemembers that this is a great place to live."

Donna Miles writes for the American Forces Press Service, Defense Media Activity. This story was originally featured at Defense.gov.

Humphreys home to first American water park (by Steven Hoover)

SINCE May 2007, members of the U.S. Army Garrison Humphreys community have marked the beginning of the summer season by participating in activities at the Splish and Splash Water Park, the first park of its kind on an Army installation in Korea.

Operated by Family and Morale, Welfare and Recreation, the park was specifically designed to provide the excitement of a typical American water park. It has all the basic necessities: two water slides, a zero-entry water play area, children’s pool and water fort, and an Olympic-size pool. There is also a hot tub, snack bar, outdoor volleyball court, one- and three-meter diving boards, an amphitheatre, water basketball area and locker rooms.

Near the children’s play area is a snack bar and umbrella-covered tables, where parents can relax while their little ones play in the pools. The children’s area has a zero-entry pool design, which allows them a gradual entry into the pool instead of a sudden drop off into the water.

Patrons travel from all over the peninsula to use the facility.

Although the park gets the bulk of its usage during the summer season, it opens in January for the annual Polar Bear Swim. This year, about 200 people participated in the event.

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Camp Humphreys readies for more troops, Families – FMWRC – US Army 100727

Camp Humphreys readies for more troops, Families – FMWRC – US Army 100727
fitness articles
Image by familymwr
PHOTO CAPTION: USAG-H: One of several new athletic facilities under construction, Camp Humphreys’ new “Super Gym” will house an indoor pool, three full-size basketball courts, a 200 meter running track, weight room and locker room. It is scheduled to open this year. U.S. Army photo by Edward Johnson, IMCOM-K Public Affairs.

www.armymwr.com

Camp Humphreys readies for more troops, Families
Jul 27, 2010

IF you build it, they will come."

The massive military community rising from the rice paddies in South Korea dwarfs anything Kevin Costner’s character might have envisioned in the movie "Field of Dreams."

The old Camp Humphreys is transforming from a quiet aviation base off the beaten track from Pyongtaek into a major hub for U.S. forces in South Korea. It’s part of a major realignment of the 28,500 servicemembers in Korea, with nearly all of them scheduled to move south of the Han River within the next several years.

All but a tiny residual force will leave U.S. Army Garrison Yongsan, current home to U.S. Forces Korea and Combined Forces Korea in the heart of Seoul, and the 2nd Infantry Division and its supporting elements will relocate from Camp Casey and its tiny satellite bases north of the capital.

Most will consolidate at Camp Humphreys, where a U.S. military base is being built that’s unlike anything ever seen before on the Korean peninsula.

The project is moving forward, full speed ahead, Gen. Walter "Skip" Sharp, commander of U.S. Forces Korea, reported to the House Armed Services Committee in March.

"We are on track, over the next five or six years, to complete all of the construction down there," he told the panel. "We will actually start moving down there in 2012, and then phase that in over the next several years following that."

Sharp resisted setting a definitive timetable for completion, but said the effort is on the fast track.

"We’re trying to do it as quickly as possible, to be able to return this land to the Republic of Korea and to consolidate our forces to improve the quality of life for our servicemembers," he told Congress.

At Humphreys, Col. Joseph Moore, the garrison commander, gets excited talking about the enormity of the project and the unprecedented quality of life it will offer.

Initial plans called for the post’s population to more than quadruple from the current 10,000, which includes 4,200 military members and about 2,500 U.S. civilian employees, contractors and Family members. But a new dynamic added to the mix just as the relocation plan was being launched-the normalization of tours in South Korea-is expected to further increase the scope of the project, Moore said.

Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates announced in December the extension of tour lengths in Korea. Under the normalization plan, single servicemembers will serve two-year tours, and married troops who bring their Families will stay for three years.

So instead of about 1,900 Family members currently here, and about 15,000 expected to arrive as U.S. forces relocate south and more command-sponsored slots are offered, Moore estimates that the post ultimately could become home to as many as 30,000 Family members, swelling the base’s total population to more than 62,000.

Bulldozers are busy at work preparing for their arrival. The result will be a brand-new installation, unrecognizable to anyone who has served in the hodgepodge of buildings built at Humphreys over the decades to accommodate troops serving one-year, unaccompanied tours.

Seventy percent of those existing buildings will be razed, explained Todd Dirmeyer, chief master planner for the project. Replacing them will be a state-of-the-art community planned from the ground up to accommodate servicemembers and their Families. The new Humphreys complex will dwarf the current post, tripling its size to almost 3,600 acres and providing about 30 million square feet in finished building space, compared to the current 4 million.

For comparison’s sake, Fort Bliss, Texas, the U.S. installation experiencing the most growth due to base realignment and closure mandates, is adding 13 million square feet of facilities, Moore noted.

"It really is an awesome thing, if you think about it, because we are going to build a city here," he said. "This is like starting with a blank canvas that considers the whole of the property and the timing of the demolition and construction. At the end of it, we will have essentially a new installation, instead of a new one adjoined to an old one."

That new installation will provide state-of-the-art unit training, maintenance and equipment storage facilities, as well as modern housing, dining and recreational amenities, Dirmeyer said.

The plan incorporates lessons from Fort Bliss and other BRAC installations, from the multi-story post exchange that’s proven successful at Kadena Air Base, Japan, and from the transformation Moore oversaw at the Grafenwoehr Training Area in Germany.

"This represents a new vision, with efficient and thoughtful facility placement," Dirmeyer said, as he looked over a map of the post dotted with different-colored squares and rectangles representing facilities to be built.

"The maneuver and training areas designated for local training are situated away from the housing, recreational and commercial areas. The industrial areas and vehicle maintenance facilities are away from those areas," he said. "Troop housing is within walking distance of working areas. Family housing is in a commercial area, with Family-friendly facilities and schools within walking distance or an easy commute."

Barracks will be the popular "one plus one" design, in which servicemembers have private bedrooms and bathrooms, but share a common living area. A private company will pay for, build and manage most Family housing units, similar to the residential communities initiative being used at stateside posts.

A downtown shopping area, built around a food, beverage and entertainment complex, will give garrison residents a sense of Hometown USA, Dirmeyer said. An aquatics park that opened in 2006 already has proven to be a big hit, as well as the new community fitness center, affectionately called the "Super Gym."

While providing these and other quality-of-life amenities, the planners took pains to preserve green spaces. Walkways connect living and working areas, and ball fields, picnic areas and a riverfront jogging path will beckon residents outdoors.

Even with his latest challenge-accommodating an additional 15,000 Family members due to tour normalization-Moore is committed to preserving sweeping outdoor areas. "We’re looking at a lot of different options, and we have a lot of ideas," he said. "What we don’t want is to sacrifice what is really a great plan by plugging additional buildings in almost randomly."

As these final decisions are made, Humphreys is buzzing with construction activity.

Eighteen construction projects, with a contract value of .2 billion, already are under way on the existing post. Another 57 projects are in the planning and design process.

Meanwhile, a massive effort is under way to build up the rice paddies surrounding the post to accommodate the new construction. The land needs to be built up almost 15 feet to bring it above the 50-year flood plain, Moore said.

That, Dirmeyer explained, takes a lot of dirt.

"On a busy day this summer, you would see upward of 3,000 vehicles in a single day, bringing dirt in here," he said. "If you took all the mileage from the first truck to the very last truck required to do this land expansion, it would equal 17 round-trips to the moon. And if you took all the fill, it would fill the Hoover Dam." As the land is built up, giant piles are being driven into the ground to provide a stable building site.

As the planning and building processes take place, Moore said, the biggest challenge is ensuring it never interferes with the U.S. mission here.

"My first goal is to support General Sharp’s first priority: to be prepared to fight tonight," he said. "So everything we do has to be connected to that first goal. We cannot do something that would interrupt a unit’s ability to do its mission."

The effort here also supports Sharp’s priority of strengthening the U.S.-South Korea alliance because of the cooperative way it’s being planned, funded and built, Moore said.

Moore said he’s particularly proud of the quality-of-life improvements the new U.S. Army Garrison Humphreys will provide U.S. servicemembers and their Families, fulfilling Sharp’s third command priority.

Ultimately, Moore said he expects Humphreys to be the assignment of choice for U.S. forces, who will come to see it as the best place to serve in South Korea.

"This ought to sell itself. We ought not have to sell Humphreys," he said. "If we do it well, it will sell itself, and servicemembers will tell other servicemembers that this is a great place to live."

Donna Miles writes for the American Forces Press Service, Defense Media Activity. This story was originally featured at Defense.gov.

Humphreys home to first American water park (by Steven Hoover)

SINCE May 2007, members of the U.S. Army Garrison Humphreys community have marked the beginning of the summer season by participating in activities at the Splish and Splash Water Park, the first park of its kind on an Army installation in Korea.

Operated by Family and Morale, Welfare and Recreation, the park was specifically designed to provide the excitement of a typical American water park. It has all the basic necessities: two water slides, a zero-entry water play area, children’s pool and water fort, and an Olympic-size pool. There is also a hot tub, snack bar, outdoor volleyball court, one- and three-meter diving boards, an amphitheatre, water basketball area and locker rooms.

Near the children’s play area is a snack bar and umbrella-covered tables, where parents can relax while their little ones play in the pools. The children’s area has a zero-entry pool design, which allows them a gradual entry into the pool instead of a sudden drop off into the water.

Patrons travel from all over the peninsula to use the facility.

Although the park gets the bulk of its usage during the summer season, it opens in January for the annual Polar Bear Swim. This year, about 200 people participated in the event.

search.ahp.us.army.mil/search/articles/index.php?search=S…

Pilates classes help keep European military communities fit – FMWRC – US Army – 100924

Pilates classes help keep European military communities fit – FMWRC – US Army – 100924
pilates exercises
Image by familymwr
PHOTO CAPTION: Stasia Bryant, Pilates instructor for Heidelberg Sports and Fitness assists one of her students, Yuko Daniels during a Pilates class in Heidelberg, Germany. The Family, Morale, Welfare and Recreation class is just one of many offered to help keep Soldiers, families and civilians fit to fight. (Photo by Dijon Nichelle Rolle, USAG Baden-Wurttemberg, cleared for public release, not for commercial use, attribution requested.)

www.armymwr.com

Pilates classes help keep European military communities fit

Sep 24, 2010

By Dijon Rolle, USAG Baden-Wuerttemberg Public Affairs

HEIDELBERG, Germany — Tucked away inside the Patrick Henry Village Activity Center in Heidelberg a small group gathered, its members armed with long swathes of purple or lime green stretchy material.

Their teacher, Stasia Bryant, led them through a series of simple exercises using brightly-colored resistance bands while she shared a few jokes to break the ice and keep her students encouraged along the way.

Bryant is a Pilates instructor and the first class of her fall session was full of new faces like Yuko Daniels, who admits she signed up for the class to help her stay committed to her exercise routine despite a busy home life.

"If I tried to do this on my own, I think it would be hard for me. I would probably do it once or twice and then stop, but coming here will help keep me accountable," Daniels said.

Accountable indeed, as Bryant focused her 19 years of ballet training and eight years of Pilates teaching experience into making sure each student used the proper technique. Earlier in her career she danced throughout the United States and Europe, most recently here in the Roadside Theater’s production of "Cats."

With a gentle hand and warm demeanor, the Colorado native carefully inspects and corrects each one of her student’s form with razor-sharp precision during the weekly sessions.

"Inhale … shoulders up," Bryant said.

Bryant has taught Pilates in Heidelberg four times a week for the past four years and her passion for it, and overall commitment to helping her students improve their physical fitness is evident.

"I love it. I enjoy teaching, and I love people," she said. "I hope to be doing this forever."

Pilates is a physical fitness system developed in the early 20th century by the late Joseph Pilates. It was primarily used by athletes and dancers before gaining mainstream popularity several years ago.

Pilates can be practiced using different specially designed apparatuses or with mats and props such as exercise balls, foam rollers, rotating disks and resistance bands as Bryant’s class does.

"Pilates uses all the core muscles, which does not necessarily mean just the abdominals; it uses the core of every muscle. We work on first stability, then go out from there," Bryant said.

Her hour -long class stresses the important principles of proper alignment, breathing and control – all of which the mother of two credits for her own improved health.

"After I had my children and was teaching ballet so much, I had a lot of lower back pain, and one of my ballet teachers started teaching Pilates. That’s how we would start every ballet class and … it really was unbelievable. I really would wake up in the morning with no lower back pain at all," Bryant said.

"Not everyone can do ballet and dance, and you can’t do it forever, but Pilates is something that everyone can do," the instructor said.

Bryant said Pilates is an especially good form of exercise for new mothers, people with back problems and anyone seeking to improve their flexibility and posture or recovering from an injury.

The class can also help with toning and overall fitness and also is suitable for all age groups and fitness levels.

"I just wanted to get back into shape … I was a dancer before and I’ve done aerobics for years, but I wanted to try something new. It’s hard but I love it. I noticed my flexibility and posture improved and I feel stronger," said Allison Grover, a student in the class. Grover’s husband is a member of the Canadian Army and the couple is stationed in Heidelberg.

Bryant said many people confuse Pilates with Yoga or are intimidated after seeing some of the exercises. "One thing is people think they have to have flexibility to come in; that’s pretty irreverent. They think it’s a lot like Yoga. Totally different system then Yoga … and it’s an entirely different exercise program. Some of the exercises look the same but they are done differently and it’s nothing like Yoga."

Pilates and other regular fitness classes are offered through the Family and Morale, Welfare and Recreation’s Sports and Fitness Office.

The classes give Soldiers, civilians and family members an opportunity to enhance their physical fitness as part of the Comprehensive Community Fitness program.

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U.S. Army Confinement Facility-Europe Confinement Exercise 2010

U.S. Army Confinement Facility-Europe Confinement Exercise 2010
exercise plan
Image by heraldpost
Maj. Chad Goyette, commander of the U.S. Army Confinement Facility-Europe, addresses his staff and Soldiers June 23 after the completion of the facility’s quarterly Emergency Action Plan exercise on Coleman barracks in Mannheim, Germany. Using the scenario of an escaped convict, the facility was able to test the responses of its personnel and evaluate the effectiveness of its standard operating procedure.
(U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Adrienne Killingsworth, 18th MP Brigade, Public Affairs Office)

U.S. Army Confinement Facility-Europe Confinement Exercise 2010

U.S. Army Confinement Facility-Europe Confinement Exercise 2010
exercise plan
Image by heraldpost
Sfc. Shawn Grays, the chief of corrections supervisory branch with the 9th Military Police Detachment, uses an emergency frequency to communicate with search teams of Soldiers looking for a simulated “escaped convict” during the U.S. Army Confinement Facility-Europe’s quarterly Emergency Action Plan exercise June 23 on Coleman Barracks in Mannheim, Germany. The exercise is an opportunity for Soldiers to test their emergency responses and evaluate the facility’s standard operating procedures.
(U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Adrienne Killingsworth, 18th MP Brigade, Public Affairs Office)