For weeks, Morale, Welfare, and Recreation (MWR) Guam has been working diligently behind the scenes in support of the military’s COVID-19 response efforts.
To date, MWR Guam has provided more than 39,300 meals, 150 cots, 60 beds, 40 bed box frames, 21 desk chairs, 220 pillows, 780 sheets, 60 blankets, and 350 towels.
According to MWR Director Julian Bogan, the organization has been providing daily meals to Sailors assigned to U.S. Naval Base Guam (NBG), USS Theodore Roosevelt (CVN-71), Construction Battalion Maintenance Unit 303, as well as Sailors and Marines assigned to 3D Medical Battalion. On March 27, the Theodore Roosevelt arrived at Apra Harbor. The Nimitz-class nuclear powered aircraft carrier brought nearly 5,000 Sailors, hundreds of whom are being housed on NBG amidst the COVID-19 pandemic.
The other items including beds, blankets, sheets, and towels were provided through MWR-managed Navy Gateway Inns and Suites (NGIS) to non-NGIS locations in support of the COVID-19 response efforts. NGIS personnel were also pivotal in the sanitation of facilities occupied by those who were subject to the DoD’s Restriction of Movement policy.
“NGIS has been instrumental in cleaning and turning over spaces safely and efficiently during this effort,” Bogan said.
According to Bogan, more than 450 NGIS rooms and homes, have been cleaned, sanitized, and turned over for use since March 15.
The support does not stop there. MWR has provided WiFi services for shelter facilities, helping Sailors maintain contact with their loved ones.
“(MWR) Outdoor Recreation and the Sumay Cove Marina have assisted by providing berthing areas with tables, chairs, and canopies to improve quality of life in these areas,” Bogan said.
Recreation and fitness gear was also provided by MWR Deployed Forces Support (DFS) for active duty personnel involved in the COVID-19 response, as well as visiting, and homeported ships sequestered to the pier.
“Every day, the MWR team has come out and given every ounce to our COVID-19 efforts, whether it was food, or Internet, or sanitation, or just making the quality of life more comfortable for these Sailors,” said NBG Commanding Officer Capt. Jeffrey Grimes. “They have done a superb job and I’m so proud of the work they continue to do.”
COVID-19 has brought on significant challenges, but Bogan said his team will continue to go above and beyond the call.
“MWR has overcome all obstacles to ensure quality of life standards continue for NBG and our guests from the USS Theodore Roosevelt,” Bogan said. “There is a certain amount of pride that comes with taking on these heavy tasks. The team goes the extra mile daily to ensure that our active duty men and women remain resilient and ready to face what may come tomorrow — that brings us satisfaction.”