Be sure to watch NBC Nightly News this evening, as United Through Reading’s Military Program will be featured! Learn more about how this innovative program keeps military families connected through the gift of books and a shared story. Be sure to check your local listings for times.
Can’t wait until tonight to hear about United Through Reading? Check out this great story from USO Kuwait…
Sailor’s Hobby Gives Back to USO
by Duane DeVorak, Media Director, Camp Ali Al Salem
Deployed service members dedicate hard work to their job and the branch they serve in; however that does not mean they have to sacrifice their other hobbies and passions. One sailor uses his skills as a cartoonist to beautify the base and build morale.
The USO at Camp Ali Al Salem (AAS) was trying to promote the already successful United Through Reading program and Keon Moore, one of the Duty Managers at AAS realized one way to do this was to paint one of the T-Walls outside of the center.
“While on a deployment service members look for any opportunity to bring themselves closer to their families. Whether it’s through morale calls or e-mails there is always a way to reach that love one back home, but another way to connect to the little one in your life is the USO’s UTR program,” said Moore. “That’s why it’s so important to promote this program.”
Navy Petty Officer 2nd Class Ronald Kaopuiki had already painted several walls for Navy Customs here at Camp AAS. It was no surprise when he was asked to paint one for the USO that he agreed to help out in no time
“I did this for the kids basically,” said Kaopuiki. “By painting this wall I am able to help promote this program and get service members to read to their children.”
Kaopuiki along with three other USO volunteers completed the wall in about seven hours. The entire wall was done so quickly thanks to his idea of painting with spray paint.
The theme selected was Dr. Seuss, since the popular character is so well known and people will automatically look to see what the wall is all about.
Since 2006, United Through Reading recordings made by troops at USO centers has steadily increased. In the first year, a little more than 4,200 recordings took place at USO locations. The total number grew to more than 20,000 in 2008 and reached 57,000 in 2009.