KANDAHAR AIRFIELD, AFGHANISTAN
KANDAHAR AIRFIELD, Afghanistan —While deployed to Kandahar Airfield, Afghanistan, the 3rd Sustainment Brigade has incorporated team building, unit cohesion and social events in order to help develop and maintain trusted, valued friendships and relationships.
Throughout their nine-month tour, the ‘Providers’ are planning to host a number of social events such as branch birthday parties, professional development gatherings and different ethnic observances, just to name a few.
The Kandahar Airfield Family and Morale, Welfare and Recreation program also offers Troops a variety of activities like poker tournaments, yoga classes, Salsa night, Jiu-Jitsu and karaoke, which offer soldiers the opportunity to socialize amongst each other.
“We organize and publicize events that allow Soldiers to get together and have fun,” said 1st Lt. Zachary Schofield, future operations and plans officer with the 3rd Sustainment Brigade, and native of Savannah, Ga. “Soldiers can blow off steam and have fun while deployed in addition to building relationships, and that is key to resiliency.”
Maintaining social interaction while deployed also boosts soldier-morale and fosters an inclusive environment, Schofield said.
During a deployment, where soldiers spend several hours per day with their fellow co-workers, it is inevitable for personal relationships to form in addition to work relationships. The 3rd Sustainment Brigade is helping soldiers build upon these relationships—creating a friendly work environment and teaching Troops to trust and rely on each another.
“I feel a social relationship is very important because you are able to interact with other people in a positive way, and that results in feeling connected to others and being a part of a family,” said Spc. Dionndra Harris, the 3rd Sustainment Brigade’s support operations administration assistant, and Birmingham, Ala., native. “It gives a feeling of being liked and included.”
Social activities help to build unit cohesiveness. Harris added that having good personal relationships with fellow soldiers makes her deployment more enjoyable and memorable.
“I have attended poetry night on several occasions, Zumba and Provider wellness events,” she said. “In doing so, it has helped me to open up and feel a little more relaxed.”
Specialist D’shaun Howard, a human resource specialist, with the 3rd Sustainment Brigade and native of Hampton, Va., who shares similar feelings with Harris, says eating with his section and conducting physical training with them on a daily basis helps to build trust and personal relationships.
“It’s also a good feeling to know that once you form these bonds with each other that there is someone there to support you,” he said.
This article is part four of a five-part series related to Comprehensive Soldier and Family Fitness.
||KANDAHAR AIRFIELD, AF
||BIRMINGHAM, AL, US
||FORT STEWART, GA, US
||HAMPTON, VA, US
||SAVANNAH, GA, US
This work, ‘Providers’ develop and maintain trusted relationships, by SSG Tanjie Patterson, identified by DVIDS, is free of known copyright restrictions under U.S. copyright law.