CAMP PENDLETON, Calif. --
Marines from Camp Pendleton’s Single Marine Program visit residents of the Rancho Vista Retirement Home, April 12.
SMP is a program designed to enhance the quality of life of single Marines and Sailors by providing the opportunities for recreation, community involvement and social functions.
“The Single Marine Program has three reasons for existing: quality of life advocacy, recreation and community involvement,” said Daniel West, Single Marine Program Coordinator at Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton.
Every other week, SMP takes single Marines and Sailors to volunteer at local retirement communities. Camp Pendleton SMP offers visits to three different retirement communities, including Fairwinds-Ivey Ranch, Rancho Vista and Pacific Place.
"It’s just a good morale booster for those that are in the retirement home,” said West. “A lot of them used to be Marines and they love be able to talk to someone that kind of knows what they have gone through.”
The retirees include many veterans who enjoy interacting with the younger generation of Marines.
“What is special about being here is that they are retired military people from the Marines, Army and Airforce and I am able to hear about their past,” said Lance Cpl. Christopher R. Broussard, a warehouse clerk with Light Armored Reconnaissance Battalion, 1st Marine Division. “To compare what they have been through and what their struggles were compared to today bring to light that we shouldn’t be complaining about anything.”
In order to partake in retirement community visits and other SMP events, Marines have to sign up ahead of time at their local SMP office.
SMP offers a variety of volunteering opportunities to tailor to Marines’ interests like: Habitat for Humanity, Toy for Tots, Adopt a School, beach cleanups, veteran and retirement homes.
For more information on upcoming SMP events, call 760-725-6722 or log onto www.mccscp.com/home/recreation/SMP.aspx.