CAMP LEJEUNE, N.C. -- The new Single Marine Program headquarters was opened recently in a ceremony that attracted Marines from all corners of Camp Lejeune.
"I am extremely excited to be here and being part of the opening," said Maj. Gen. David M. Mize, Commanding General Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune, before he officially opened the new headquarters. "Fifty seven to fifty eight percent of Marines are single, that's why this program is so important in taking care of the majority of Marines," he said. "An indication of how important the program is today is to look around at the Marines present here."
Also showing their support for the program were Maj.Gen. John F. Sattler, 2d Marine Division commanding general, and Sgt. Maj. Otis Kokensparger, Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune sergeant major.
The new headquarters is a first for Marine bases. No other Marine base has a Single Marine Headquarters.
"It gives us so much more freedom when making decisions for the Single Marine Program. Now that we are in our own building we won't have any problems for meetings now everyone is located in the same building together, said Sgt. Eboni N. Witherspoon, 2d Force Service Support Group's vice-president of Single Marine Program.
According to the Single Marine Program business plan, the mission of the program is to be highly energetic and get actively involved in the quality of life for single and unaccompanied Marines and sailors and enhance that quality of life in a measurable manner.
This was echoed in Mize's remarks when he said, "The role of the program is making single Marines' quality of life as good as it can possibly be."
The new headquarters means many new possibilities for the single Marines and Sailors here on base.
"The new headquarters really now has put the Single Marine Program in the spotlight and raised the program to another level," said Renee Valdov, Single Marine Program coordinator. "It really is a dream come true."
The Single Marine Program has many activities organized to improve the quality of life of single Marines and sailors aboard Camp Lejeune. Activities are organized in conjunction with the recreation centers and include parties, pool tournaments, video nights plus an assortment of trips and concerts. They also organize volunteer work to help in projects to aid in the local community.
Single Marines interested in the program and its benefits can call 451-1347 or check the web site at www.singlemarineprogram.com for more information.