Ronald Reagan Sailors Visit the Home for the Angels Orphanage in Manila
By Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class MacAdam Kane Weissman
USS Ronald Reagan Public Affairs
MANILA – Sailors aboard the Navy’s only forward-deployed aircraft carrier, USS Ronald Reagan (CVN 76), visited the Home for the Angels orphanage in Manila, June 27.
Nineteen Sailors volunteered for the project, which was coordinated by the ship’s Command Religious Ministries Department.
“We really appreciate [the Sailors] visiting and playing with the babies,” said Myrna C. Verecio, a director at the orphanage. “They love it; playing with the kids and spending time with them is the greatest kindness you could show the kids.”
According to Verecio, the orphanage supports infants and toddlers from newborns to two years old – many of whom were abandoned on the streets.
“They are very young, but have bright futures,” Verecio said. “We are dedicated to the rescue, protection and nurturing of children, and they really like it when people come to visit with them.”
The Sailors seemed to enjoy the visit as much as the children did.
“It gives me an opportunity to play with the kids and learn a little bit more about the culture and people,” said Aviation Boatswain’s Mate (Fuel) Airman David Grant, from St. Louis, Missouri. “The kids are instantly open and engaging. They are very young, so they’re full of energy and are very excited to play with new people.”
Sailors took part in a variety of activities with the children, including dancing, playing games and telling them about life in the Navy.
“Doing something like this really helps me,” said Grant. “I have a child at home and this kind of makes me feel like I’m spending time with them.”
The project was one of eight community volunteer efforts coordinated by Ronald Reagan’s CRMD. More than 200 Sailors volunteered during the ship’s scheduled five-day port visit.
Ronald Reagan, the flagship of Carrier Strike Group 5, provides a combat-ready force that protects and defends the collective maritime interests of the U.S. and its allies and partners in the Indo-Pacific region.