The Merlion Star MARCH 31, 2017 - Volume 26 - Issue 7

Table Of Contents

  • Protecting Our People Protects Our Mission
  • U.S. Sailors Strengthen Ties with Singapore Community through Volunteer Work
  • Transition Assistance - What You Need to Know Before You Go
  • Words of Wisdom
  • Navy Region Singapore Service Members Reflect during Women’s Heritage Month Celebration
  • Online Conduct - “Honor, Courage, Commitment Online, All of the Time.”
  • Team 5-Star shuts out CLWP in Admiral's Cup Ultimate Frisbee
  • MWR Updates
  • Navy Region Singapore YouTube Clips

Protecting Our People Protects Our Mission

Singapore Area Community remembers Sexual Assault Awareness & Prevention Month with No Excuses campaign.

Sexual Assault Awareness and Prevention Month (SAAPM) is recognized in April by both civilian and military communities. The Department of Defense observes SAAPM by focusing on creating the appropriate culture to eliminate sexual assault and requiring a personal commitment from all Service members at every level. We all have a part in combating sexual assault and SAAPM offers an excellent opportunity to focus attention on our individual roles.

We all have a role in preventing sexual assault and localizing SAAPM activities is a great way to extend this message.

The 2017 SAAPM Theme is, "Protecting Our People Protects Our Mission."

This theme offers numerous opportunities to deliver messages that relate to both the individual and unit level. Each Service member -- regardless of grade -- can encourage behaviors that foster a climate of dignity and respect, and in doing so, help ensure our readiness to complete the Department's mission. The attached Field Guidance offers messaging and initiatives by echelon of what could be implemented during April and beyond to support victims and advance prevention.

U.S. Sailors Strengthen Ties with Singapore Community through Volunteer Work

Story by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Madailein Abbott, CTF73 Public Affairs

Sailors stationed at Navy Region Singapore (NRS) volunteered at Chen Su Lan Methodist Children’s Home March 23, 2017 as part of a planned community relations project to foster positive contributions with the host nation of Singapore.

During volunteer efforts, Sailors played with school children in sports such as basketball, soccer and table tennis and spent the day assisting the staff at the children’s home.

"It was a great time getting to know the children and playing soccer with them outside," said Yeoman Second Class Adrian Diaz, attached to Military Sealift Command Far East. “The staff was very friendly and the kids were eager to get a game going. I hope we have the opportunity to do more events like this in the future.”

"When we are called to serve our country it is more than service, it is giving back to the community we serve all around the world." - RP1 Michael Caldera

Navy commands fleet wide encourage Sailors to volunteer in community relations (COMREL) projects in a variety of venues, from animal shelters to trash cleanup projects. These COMREL efforts benefit local communities as well as building individual morale of supporting service members.

“As a productive member in the military, it is essential to be involved in the community because there is no better way to build and establish long lasting relationships,” said Religious Program Specialist First Class Michael Caldera, of Commander Logistics Group Western Pacific (COMLOG WESTPAC). “It's a humbling experience volunteering in the community especially when we are interacting with young adolescents because in my opinion the experience is a blessing and privilege. When we are called to serve our country it is more than service, it is giving back to the community we serve all around the world.”

The COMLOG WESTPAC religious ministries office, consisting of Caldera and Lt. Russ Ferguson is in charge of organizing COMREL projects as well as reaching out to service members for volunteers.

"Bringing people together for a common goal which supports the community is what it’s all about, and I feel we’ve really accomplished that with our COMRELs." - Lt. Russ Ferguson

“We are partners with five organizations here in Singapore which helps us find volunteer work for service members,” said Ferguson. “We usually hold a monthly one available to our local community and if we have a ship pull in we will reach out to them about their interest in a COMREL event. Bringing people together for a common goal which supports the community is what it’s all about, and I feel we’ve really accomplished that with our COMRELs.”

Chen Su Lan Methodist Children’s Home was established in 1968 by the Wesley Methodist Church and the Chen Su Lan Trust. In 1968, the Chen Su Lan Trust & Wesley Methodist Church came together and leased a two-acre plot of land and built the first children's home. It was made up of three brick chalets: one house for the boys, one for the girls and one for the kitchen, office and staff sleeping quarters. The first director was a former nurse from Singapore General Hospital - Ms. Lim Cheng Kiok whose emphasis was on spiritual life, physical health & education. The children's home cared for 19 boys and girls between 4 and 14 years old. Most of the children stayed in the Home until they finished their schooling at 16 years old. Today, the children's home provides care, protection and shelter to boys and girls between 5 and 21 years old who come from needy and disadvantaged families in Singapore.

Transition Assistance - What You Need to Know Before You Go

Story by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Madailein Abbott, CTF73 Public Affairs

Processing out of the armed forces can be a daunting situation for anyone, no matter their rank or time in service. With the Transition Goals, Plans and Success class (T-GPS) offered to separating Sailors and Marines, this process is made simple and explained by counselors to help guide each service member into their post military lives.

The T-GPS is the Transition Assistance Program's (TAP) outcome-based, modular curriculum with standardized learning objectives. It transforms the way the military prepares service members transitioning to civilian life to pursue their post-service career goals. The T-GPS includes a core curriculum and individually chosen modules on education, career technical training, and entrepreneurship. It is designed to build skills and allow service members to depart "career ready" and meet mandatory Career Readiness Standards (CRS), regardless of their branch of service.

In 2013, TAP was redesigned into a cohesive, modular, outcome-based program that bolsters and standardizes the opportunities, services, and training that service members receive to better prepare them to pursue their post-military career goals. The success of the redesigned TAP is evaluated in multiple ways:

- Participant Assessment - After completing portions of the T-GPS curriculum, service members and spouses can participate in assessments in order to provide feedback on the program.

- Military Installation Site Visits - On-site reviews are conducted to review curriculum delivery and the TAP processes with service members and commanders.

- Outcome-oriented performance measures - The DoD collaborates with multiple agencies to track a variety of measures indicating career readiness, educational outcomes, and employment outcomes for service members and veterans.

Although the five-day T-GPS class is mandatory for all separating and retiring Sailors, it is not currently held in Singapore. Service members are sent to the nearest location to attend the class. For Navy Region Singapore, this is Yokosuka, Japan at Commander, Fleet Activities Yokosuka. Because T-GPS is considered official duty, service members are not required to take leave to attend.

The T-GPS is made up of four parts – Pre-separation Counseling, a Five-Day Workshop, Career Tracks and Capstone – all of which will provide you with information about post-military benefits, certification & training resources, financial planning and job search techniques. For U.S. military service members serving in Singapore, the process is implemented by holding the pre-separation counseling before departing to attend the five-day workshop. The career tracks portion is held during the class and the capstone meeting follows after class on the final day.

The T-GPS is available not only for active duty service members, but also demobilizing National Guard and Reserve component service members as well who have been activated for 180 continuous days or more. These members will participate in T-GPS and demonstrate career readiness during the Capstone event. However, some portions of T- GPS may be waived if certain conditions are met; such as if the service member is returning to guaranteed employment.

Spouses are also invited to attend T-GPS as they are eligible for certain types of counseling. These include job placement counseling, information on survivor benefits available under the laws administered by the Secretary of Defense and Secretary of Veterans Affairs, as well as counseling on the effect of career change on the individuals and families and information on suicide prevention resources following the service member’s separation from the armed forces. Spouses are also eligible for financial planning assistance, and assistance in creating a transition plan to achieve their educational, training, employment, and financial objectives. They can also receive training on home loan services and housing assistance benefits available under the laws of the Secretary of Veterans Affairs and counseling on responsible borrowing practices.

For more information on T-GPS and it’s fundamentals on transitioning to civilian life, visit https://www.dodtap.mil/resources.html.

Singapore service members reflect on Women’s History Month during celebration

Story and photos by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Madailein Abbott, CTF73 Public Affairs

Singapore-based service members and DoD civilians attended a celebration Mar 29 honoring Women’s Heritage Month and the contributions of women in service to the nation.

The 2017 National Women’s History Month theme centers on honoring “trailblazing women” who have made contributions to the empowerment and equality of women across government service and industry in the United States.

Headlining the event was Stephanie Syptak-Ramnath, Chargé d’Affaires, ad interim, U.S. Embassy Singapore. A former naval officer and career diplomat, Syptak-Ramnath spoke about the important role that women play in government service and beyond.

“In my time in the Navy, I never felt there were any issues with me being a woman,” said Syptak-Ramnath. “However, I do believe that if you don’t have 50% of your population involved with whatever your country is trying to do, then you’re running with a leg and an arm cut off.”

Stephanie Syptak-Ramnath, Charge d’Affaires, ad interim, U.S. Embassy, Singapore, speaks to Navy Region Singapore community at the Terror Club.

The event was hosted by the local Navy Diversity and Heritage Committee, a command group responsible for organizing monthly heritage celebrations for the Singapore military community. The event included free beverages and baked goods sponsored by the regional First Class Petty Officer Association.

“It was an absolute privilege serving in the Navy, because it gave me leadership opportunities coming out of college that other young women didn’t have,” said Syptak-Ramnath. “It put me in a position at a very young age to lead and develop those skills. I always look back on my time in the Navy positively and it was an honor to serve.”

Women have served with honor and valor in military service since the Revolutionary War. However, women did not become an official part of the U.S. military until 1908, when congress established the Navy Nurse Corps. Nurses remained the only women serving in the Navy until World War I, when the first enlisted women, known as Yeomanettes, provided clerical support. In 1942, the Navy launched the Women Accepted for Volunteer Emergency Service (WAVES) program, allowing women to serve outside the secretarial realm in an official uniform capacity. In 1993, congress rescinded the combat exclusion law and it enabled women to serve aboard U.S. warships and fly in all aircraft platforms.

Today, women serve in every rank from seamen to admiral, and hold nearly every job from naval aviator to deep-sea diver.

Click on image for a larger view.

Nineteen percent of the Navy's enlisted forces are women, including eight percent of all senior and master chiefs. Eighteen percent of the officer force and 11 percent of all admirals are comprised of women. In the Navy's civilian workforce, 27 percent are women and 26 percent are Senior Executive Service members.

“Women’s Heritage Month is important because everyone needs role models,” said Syptak-Ramnath. “Everywhere I’ve been there were senior women who were succeeding. It was a real inspiration and helped me to be where I am today. To see the role models that exist, it takes away any idea that there’s a glass ceiling and it makes everything possible.”

Online Conduct “Honor, Courage, Commitment Online, All of the Time.”

Produced by the Navy Office of Information (CHINFO)

The U.S. Navy defines online conduct as the use of electronic communications in an official or personal capacity that is consistent with Navy Values and standards of conduct. It is important that all Sailors know that once they have logged on to a social media platform, they still represent the U.S. Navy.

Online bullying, hazing, harassment, stalking, discrimination, retaliation, and any other type of behavior that undermines dignity and respect are not consistent with Navy core values and negatively impact the force.

When conducting themselves online and in social media, Sailors should:

  • Consider what messages are being communicated and how they could be received.
  • Create or share content that is consistent with Navy values.
  • Only post if messages or content demonstrate dignity and respect for self and others.

Explicit images taken without consent, or posted online without consent may constitute violations of the Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ). Further, Deputy Secretary of Defense Policy Memorandum, Hazing and Bullying Prevention and Response in the Armed Forces, Dec. 23, 2015, identifies hazing as so-called initiations or rites of passage in which individuals are subjected to physical or psychological harm.” It identifies bullying as, “acts of aggression intended to single out individuals from their teammates or coworkers, or to exclude them from a military element, unit or Department of Defense organization.” Additionally, the memo states that hazing and bullying are unacceptable and are prohibited in all circumstances and environments, including off duty or unofficial unit functions and settings, as well as on social media and other digital environments.

As outlined in the CNO’s Design for Maintaining Maritime Superiority core attributes, the Navy is a values-based organization where everyone is expected to conduct themselves in a manner that is, “always upright and honorable, both in public or when no one is looking.”

“Toxic behaviors…at work, at home, or on the internet – eat away at team cohesion and erode trust. Toxic behaviors cause us to hesitate, to second guess, to look over our shoulders instead of moving together at full speed. Toxic behaviors make us weaker; they cede advantage to the enemy. Toxic behaviors are NOT for winners, they are for losers. They have no place in our Navy.” - Chief of Naval Operations Adm. John Richardson

Any member of the Navy community experiencing or witnessing incidents of improper online behavior should promptly report matters to their chain of command via the Command Managed Equal Opportunity (CMEO) or Fleet and Family Support Office. Additional avenues for reporting any information include Equal Employment Opportunity Offices and the Inspector General.

The Naval Criminal Investigative Service (NCIS) encourages anyone with knowledge of criminal activity to report it to their local NCIS field office directly or via text, web, or smartphone app.

Team 5-Star shuts out CLWP in Admiral's Cup Ultimate Frisbee

Photos by Marc Ayalin, Navy Region Singapore

It was a shut out event for CLWP in the Admiral's Cup Ultimate Frisbee, March 29, 2017, game as 5-Star showed no mercy in dominating with a score of 15-2. The two teams battled it out on the field with two 20-minute half time games. In the first half, CLWP scored the first and their last 2 points of the entire game while 5-Star pushed hard closing the first half with a 7-2 lead.

In the second half, CLWP couldn't find their groove as 5-Star continued their onslaught by scoring 8 more points! Thank you for the wonderful showmanship yesterday at the Terror Club Field. Check out the photos below to see some of the action.

Sports

Come out to Pick-Up Soccer every Wednesdays at the Terror Club field at 4 p.m. Pick-Up Basketball starting up March 28, 2017, every Tuesday and Thursday.

Events

Come out to the Terror Club Multipurpose field April 15, 2017 at 8 a.m. for the Spring Fitness Obstacle Course Challenge!!! You can compete individually or as a team of 4 and below. The course will be a series of fun physical challenges to include, crawling, quick feet drills, and some balancing elements. Sign up your teams by Friday, April 14, 2017 by emailing mwrsportsspecialist@gmail.com . There will be 2 prizes, Personal Training Gift Certificate for $25.00/ $25.00 NEX gift card, and bragging rights of course! The top 2 timed individuals get to compete for a prize, and the top 2 teams ( 4 people max) get to compete for a prize. All authorized patrons welcome!

Programs

Physical Training now offered at Fleet Fitness Gym for minimal fees. You can choose the session that bests suites you, either come in with a buddy, a group, or just on your own. All are offered at Fleet Fitness. Please contact the front desk staff for any questions at 6750-2482 or email the fitness manager at mwrsgfitness@outlook.com. If you are interested you can pick up a Personal Training packet at the front desk to fill out and pay the $25.00 USD fee for your initial assessment and get started!

Pilates sign up for the next six week session starting now! Class begins April 10 through May 25, 2017 with no class on April 27. You now have the option of doing one ($60.00 USD per session), two ($120.00 USD per session), or even three ($180.00 USD per session) classes per week!! Must pay for full session before you begin. Paying for one class at a time is not an option. Payment can be made at Fleet Fitness Center front desk where they will issue you a Pilates Punch card. Please email the Fitness Manager if you have any questions at mwrsgfitness@outlook.com.

Aquatics

  • * Lap swim begins April 17, from 6-7 a.m., at Terror Club Pool. Four lanes will be available before work to get your laps in, first come first serve! This is not an instructional course. We will see you there!!
  • Parent-Child swim lessons offered at Terror Club Pool beginning April 17 to May 13. Each session is 4 weeks and 8 lessons per session for $40.00 USD at ages 6 months-3 years old. Sign up at Fleet Fitness Center front desk by Sunday, April 16, 2017, at 8 p.m. with your first and second choice group date options and payment. Classes will be 40 minutes long with American Red Cross instructors. Make-up classes may be provided due to inclement weather.
  • Parent-Child swim lessons offered at Terror Club Pool beginning April 17 to May 13. Each session is 4 weeks and 8 lessons per session for $40.00 USD at ages 6 months-3 years old. Sign up at Fleet Fitness Center front desk by Sunday, April 16, 2017, at 8 p.m. with your first and second choice group date options and payment. Classes will be 40 minutes long with American Red Cross instructors. Make-up classes may be provided due to inclement weather.

Please contact mwraquatics@yahoo.com with any questions.

* Just a friendly reminder of the current youth policy at the Terror Club Swimming Pool: All children 12 and under must be accompanied by an adult/legal guardian 18 years and above. Youth 13-17 years of age must, in order to swim unaccompanied, have passed the swim test given by the lifeguards with signed documentation.

Please call the Fleet Fitness Center for more information at 6750-2482.

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