NAS Pensacola MWR Library Recognized for Breaking Reading Record
PENSACOLA, Fla. Naval Air Station (NAS) Pensacola leadership recognized the air station’s Morale, Welfare and Recreation (MWR) Library Summer Reading Program participants during a July 30 ceremony at the MWR Liberty Department’s Portside Complex.
NAS Pensacola Command Master Chief Mario Rivers congratulated the NAS Pensacola MWR Library Summer Reading Program participants during the brief ceremony, as well as praised the efforts of the more than 40 service members who volunteered to read and interact with the school-aged children.
“NAS Pensacola considers children one of the most important aspects of our Navy,” Rivers said. “The service members who have volunteered their efforts in reading to and with these school-aged children through the MWR Library Summer Reading Program are not only creating a positive example for these individuals who might someday be in our shoes, but are helping to create an interest in reading for our younger generation.”
The mission of the Department of Defense-MWR Summer Reading Program is to help families bridge the “summer learning gap” while inspiring literacy and life-long learning. The six-week long program, themed It’s Showtime at Your Library,’ incorporated books based on movies, and was heavily reliant on the volunteer effort of service members from NAS Pensacola-area commands.
Hannah Rapetti, the NAS Pensacola MWR librarian, said that volunteer efforts from Naval Air Technical Training Center (NATTC), Marine Aviation Training Support Group (MATSG) 23 and Aviation Maintenance Squadron 1 staff members were instrumental throughout the program, with more than 130 readers participating and earning an NAS Pensacola MWR Library record number of more than 96-thousand minutes spent reading.
Rapetti added that volunteers both read to and helped program participants read books as well as participated in other activities, including dressing as Lego Batman’ and Lego Joker’ and enacting a fight, interacting with program participants in the Worm Jungle’ during Jungle Book’ week; and practicing their skills with magic wands’ during Harry Potter’ week.
“We could not have pulled off this program without the support from our service members,” she said. “To have the service members show the children that reading can be fun and exciting was certainly something we at the library and the children will appreciate for a long time.”
According to the Military OneSource website, students participating in library summer reading programs score higher on reading achievement tests, and students who read often are higher achievers than students who seldom read.
“Reading during the summer time is instrumental to promoting an increase in confidence, comprehension, and reading as a past time for younger generations,” Rapetti said.
The NAS Pensacola MWR department promotes and maintains well-being and quality of life programs for area service members, their families and other eligible beneficiaries.
NAS Pensacola, referred to as the “Cradle of Naval Aviation,” is designed to support operational and training missions of tenant commands including Naval Air Technical Training Center (NATTC); Naval Aviation Schools Command (NASC); the Center for Naval Aviation Technical Training (CNATT); Marine Aviation Training Support Groups (MATSG) 21 and 23; and is the headquarters for Naval Education and Training Command (NETC).