475th EABS connects with ‘neighbors’ delivering supplies, candy

  • Published
  • By Staff Sgt. Matthew J. Wisher
  • 435th Air Expeditionary Wing Public Affairs

The African proverb, “it takes a village” means that an entire community of people is needed to achieve some sort of goal.

The 475th Expeditionary Air Base Squadron and Alpha Company, Task Force Bayonet at Camp Simba, Manda Bay, Kenya believes this to be true as a team of more than six Airmen and Soldiers visited Magogoni Village in Kenya, Nov. 6, 2020.

The visit was a humanitarian mission to deliver school supplies and gifts to the children of Magogoni as a small token to recognize the completion of a newly built school, and the first visit to the village since January 2020.

“The best part was being able to make a difference, even a small one, to the local children that need the help,” said U.S. Air Force Capt. Ian Latham, 475th EABS deputy force commander.

The school, which was opened in September, was funded and supplied by members of Camp Simba. Although complete, the school still has significant needs especially for the younger children that attend school.

After handing out the gifts and supplies, the joint team was able to meet with the teachers, as well as the chief of Hindi and Magogoni.

“It was a great experience,” said U.S Air Force Master Sgt. Bennie Prescott, 475th EABS plans and programs section chief. “The children wanted to hold my hand and walk with me through the village. The village adults were open and wanted to interact, laugh and take lots of photos.”

The service members that participated in the visit thought the mission was a complete success, and strengthened the relationship with the local population.

“It was life changing. You see how excited everyone was, especially the joy you bring to the children. It was truly humbling and something that we will continue to do,” said U.S. Army Capt. Jeffrey Sabatke, Company Commander of Alpha Company TF Bayonet.   

With other visits on the horizon, the 475th EABS continues to foster an environment of camaraderie and presenting themselves as Air Force ambassadors during every visit they set out on.