The US Navy’s High-Speed Vessel Swift (HSV 2) has left Dar es Salaam after finishing a 12-day port visit in Tanzania to conduct training as part of Africa Partnership Station (APS) East.
During the two-week visit, Swift sailors and embarked personnel conducted training workshops with more than 100 members of the Tanzanian People’s Defence Force (TPDF) covering leadership, port security, environmental protection, infantry tactics and medical skills.
“There are some instances that you can’t anticipate and these classes help us learn different lessons,” said Lieutenant Frank Kavalambi, a TPDF officer. “I took the port security class the first week, and the environmental workshop this week, so I’ve gotten a great deal out of this and I hope we can continue participating in these types of events.”
Swift’s crew painted the classroom walls at Kinondoni Muslim High School and participated in a soccer match with the students.
“When we showed the school’s administrator the classroom, his eyes lit up when he saw the finished product, there was no need for a translation for that reaction,” said Lieutenant Jason Meyers, member of Maritime Partnership Program (MPP) Tanzania detachment.
Swift’s personnel also shared their culture with the locals by celebrating America’s Independence Day on the flight deck of Swift with a cookout and fireworks display. Members of U.S. Naval Forces Europe band “Flagship” participated in several events and Swift’s crew offloaded pallets which included wheelchairs for the disabled, books for children and water filters.
“Sometimes we get so mission-focused just making sure the pallets are transferred safely off the ship that we forget these items are going to help people that need it, so it was great to be reminded of that by the people we spoke with,” said Lieutenant Commander Ted Kopinski, team member MPP detachment.
“Hearing about the impact of what these wheelchairs will mean for some of the people in the area really brought it home for me.”
Swift, a Military Sealift Command-chartered High Speed Vessel, is making port calls throughout Africa in support of APS and Theater Security Cooperation (TSC) visits. She departed Tanzania on July 5.
APS is an international security cooperation initiative, facilitated by Commander, U.S. Naval Forces Europe-Africa, aimed at strengthening global maritime partnerships through training and collaborative activities in order to improve maritime safety and security in Africa