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Team Andersen supports community learning initiative

  • Published
  • By Airman Whitney Amstutz
  • 36th Wing Public Affairs
Members of the 36th Communications Squadron donated 12 laptop computers to the Government of Guam Association of Retired Persons Inc. in Hagatna Aug. 13.

A recent break-in at the GGARP resulted in the loss of several computers and other office supplies.

"Laptop computers were stolen and desktop computers were destroyed," said Pilar Lujan, President of the GGARP. "Needless to say, the incident inhibited the plan to start a computer class so active and interested elderly citizens may be taught computer technology."

The training, which will consist of Microsoft Office and network usage, will allow the individuals who participate to become more marketable in the workplace and help them to have a better understanding of the general functions of a computer.

"I feel that it is very important that those who would like to learn more about modern computer programs and capabilities have that opportunity," Lujan said. "Having these skills can make a big difference today. Almost everything is done electronically."

Hoping to keep plans for the program on schedule, Lujan reached out to Andersen for assistance.

"Once we received Pilar Lujan's request we got to work determining whether or not we would be able to help," said Jane Sasai, base equipment controller for the 36th Comm Squadron. "There are restrictions on the organizations we can donate to. Fortunately, the GGARP is a non-profit organization that benefits the elderly and we were cleared to help out."

Team Andersen was able to donate a dozen laptops just in time for the commencement of their introduction to computers class. The donation is beneficial to both the GGARP and the Air Force. By giving these obsolete computers to the community instead of sending them back through the supply system, countless man-hours are saved.

"The computers were donated from the Comm Squadron," Sasai said. "The Air Force refreshes their systems every five years and we are left with equipment that is no longer compatible with our network. This allows us to give the functional supplies to groups around Guam who need them. It is a great way to help out the various educational associations in the community."

Providing supplies and services whenever possible is an essential part of showing the community that the Airmen of Andersen Air Force Base, and servicemembers in general, are here to help.

"Though these assets are no longer useful to us, they are still fully functional and can be of great use to others," Sasai said. "These computers give elders in the community the capability to understand the latest computer technology. Many of them do not know how to use and take advantage of today's systems and these classes can give them the advantages they need. It gives them the ability to learn."