Marines

Photo Information

Kids enrolled in the While We Wait Club aboard MCAS New River pose for a photo with Sarah Harrell and Marine volunteers during a WWWC event, June 20.

Photo by Cpl. Cameron Payne

While We Wait supports children of deployed parents

26 Jun 2014 | Cpl. Cameron Payne

Having a deployed service member can be a stressful time for families and dealing with the stress can prove challenging.

The While We Wait Club, a monthly program offered through the Marine Corps Family Team Building Center aboard Marine Corps Air Station New River, helps children cope with the separation from their deployed parent.

“The program offers kids the chance to realize they aren’t alone,” said Wendy Loizzi, spouse of a deployed Marine. “I could tell that my son was having trouble with his father being away and While We Wait showed him that there were other kids who missed their parents and that he wasn’t alone.”

During June’s While We Wait event, the children got their faces painted, had a water balloon fight, and enjoyed the company of other children coping with a deployed parent.

The program offers children a safe place to relax in a supportive environment, said Sarah Herrell, Marine Corps Family Team Building trainer aboard MCAS New River.

“This program focuses on resiliency-based education and emotional regulation for the children,” said Harrell. “Our mission is to enhance the Marine lifestyle during deployment and training exercises.”

Harrell also said the MCFTB center works with the Single Marine Program to find volunteers.

“I just recently started volunteering with While We Wait and I love it,” said Pfc. Devonte Holmes, a maintenance administration clerk with Marine Operational Test and Evaluation Squadron 22. “It feels great to give back to the community and to take time out of my day to make a difference in someone else’s life.”

Holmes said volunteering with While We Wait is a perfect opportunity for Marines to positively impact the air station communities.

For more information on how to sign up for While We Wait, or to seek volunteer opportunities, contact 449-5343.