An orphanage in Jamaica has received a makeover from personnel aboard RFA Mounts Bay, say the Royal Navy.
Once the orphanage was singled out as requiring assistance, two teams from RFA Mounts Bay and a small team from the British High Commission, headed up by wife of Assistant Defence Attaché Karen Matheson, sprang into action to provide it.
The Royal Navy say Mounts Bay is currently offering reassurance to UK overseas dependent territories, providing humanitarian and disaster relief during the main hurricane season and conducting counter narcotic patrols as part of the wider international effort.
The RFA “Bay Team” a mixture of RFA, RLC and REME personnel was organised by Seaman Grade 1 (SG1A) Jonathan Roberts.
According to a press release, during the day the team:
- Degreased and painted the kitchen and larder areas;
- Painted the main office, including bookcases and units within the play room;
- Fixed a security light, fitted strip lights fitted and checked electrical fittings;
- Emptied out, reorganised and restacked storerooms;
- Fixed planks in the playground and replaced washing lines.
Additionally, RFA Mounts Bay ship’s company managed to raise £248.60 – 990.61 Jamaican dollars – from various on board activities, including quizzes and general collections.
SG1A Roberts said:
“At the end of a busy day, the volunteers and staff couldn’t believe what we managed to achieve in such a short time.
It was a good day and we managed to achieve what the home wanted in the time that was available to us. The kids and volunteers at the home were very happy to see us and were impressed with the transformation.”
The Bay class are operated by the Royal Fleet Auxiliary and are officially designated as ‘Landing Ship Docks’. Each Bay class vessel is capable of carrying up to 24 Challenger tanks or 150 military trucks in 1,150 linear metres of space. The UK operates three Bay class vessels after selling the fourth to Australia.
Under normal conditions, a Bay class ship can carry 350 soldiers, but this can be doubled to 700 in overload conditions. The flight deck is capable of handling helicopters up to the size of Chinooks, as well as Merlin helicopters however while the class have no hangar, a temporary shelter can be set up to house a single helicopter. The well dock can carry one LCU Mark 10 or two LCVPs, and two Mexeflotes can be suspended from the ship’s flanks.