About the Author: Charlotte Hu is the Public Affairs Officer at U.S. Embassy Georgetown, Guyana.
Continuing Promise 2010 (CP10), a humanitarian civic assistance mission, kicked off with what the local newspaper called “an impressive ceremony.” President Bharat Jagdeo welcomed the USS Iwo Jima and crew and complimented the United States on its the partnership in combating AIDS and helping the poor. Noting the number of Guyanese-Americans who will meet with their families during the visit, the President added that the relationship between the two countries runs much deeper than the CP10 initiatives.
The USS Iwo Jima's commodore, U.S. Navy Captain Negus, talked about the neighborly spirit between the two nations, and a U.S. Air Force band played a Guyanese folk song, “Manin' neighba, manin” which translates as “Morning, Neighbor, Morning.” Guyana's steel pan orchestra played the national anthem of Guyana as well as a number of lively tunes.
The CP10 crew onboard the multipurpose amphibious ship will offer care and support at five medical sites and three engineering sites over the course of the mission's 10-day stay in Guyana. CP10 brings approximately 200 medical personnel to Guyana, which include five surgeons, 32 military and civilian doctors, 23 nurses, 14 foreign national medical care providers, seven dentists and four veterinarians.
Many Guyanese volunteers have commented that it is great to get so much support in these rural communities which are two or three hours from the capital. Participating service members commented how much they are enjoying the experience. They have particularly enjoyed handing out the stuffed animals donated by Loving Hugs. The ship is also delivering donations from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, Project Cure, the Rotarians, Mid Continent Packaging and Give a Kid a Back Pack.
You can learn more about CP10 on the embassy's Facebook page.