On September 16, staff from the U.S. Air Forces South Forward Operating Location (FOL) and the U.S. Consulate met with school administrators from St. Antonius College, Pedro Luis Brion School, Advent School, Skol Immanuel, and the Assistant Manager of Mensing’s Caminada to celebrate the donation of $10,000 of school supplies to the four schools. Thanks to the support of the U.S. Southern Command’s Humanitarian Assistance Program and the excellent coordination by Mensing’s and St Antonius, all four schools received books, paper, pencils, pens, puzzles, art materials and more. In addition, FOL Airmen, known as Defenders, were inspired to act when they read in the local press about the need for school supplies in many communities. The Defenders fundraised within the American community on Curacao and around the world to purchase 600 additional backpacks filled with basic school supplies for students most in need.
The FOL has long partnered with local law enforcement to prevent illicit narcotics and weapons from entering the region and many on the island are aware of these activities. What is less known is that the FOL also engages with the community, hosting special tours and events for students on the island to better understand what happens at the FOL and what type of aircraft are kept there. “We are honored to give back,” stated FOL Commander Ian Barta. “We are an active part of this community and we are eager to provide assistance where we can.”
The FOL and the U.S. Consulate is thankful for the support provided by the Ministry of Education which made this donation possible. The U.S. Consulate is looking forward to working closely with the Ministry, the RK School Board, St. Antonius, and the Chamber of Commerce to improve English language education on the island. The United States strongly believes in supporting education as a way to strengthen communities and increase prosperity in the region.