"One of the elements of the Army's Soldiers creed is that I will never leave a fallen comrade. We take those words very seriously, for our Soldiers, their Families and this nation. We will never leave a fallen comrade. I want to thank the many Soldiers who've searched and continue to search for these men. Your tireless efforts are one of most important and unrelenting responsibilities we share."
-Army Chief of Staff, Gen. George W. Casey Jr.
Remains found in Iraq identified as MIA Maupin
Morale, welfare and recreation
What is it?
Morale, Welfare and Recreation (MWR) programs are designed to improve Soldier readiness by promoting mental and physical fitness, building morale, and increasing self-reliance. MWR programs include the following:
- Sports and fitness
- Outdoor recreation
- Recreation centers
- Arts and crafts
- Automotive skills
- Better opportunities for single Soldiers
- Special events and promotions
- Leisure travel
- Branded restaurants
- Golf courses
- Bowling centers
- Military clubs and catering services
- Armed forces recreation centers
- Army lodging
- Army recreational machines
These programs have direct links to readiness and retention, are vital to mission accomplishment, and are an integral part of the non-pay compensation system.
What has the Army done?
The MWR programs are ranked in the top 10 for importance and use in the leisure needs survey, the sample survey of military personnel, and the survey of Army Families. recreation programs provide critical support to Soldiers deployed in contingency operations. Civilian MWR employees work closely with deployed Soldiers in providing turnkey promotions and events while supporting gyms, recreation centers, cyber cafés and other morale-boosting activities in Iraq and Afghanistan. An in-theater recreation survey on the importance of MWR activities identified the three top impacts: helping one relax, providing fun and entertainment, and improving morale.
What continued efforts does the Army have planned for the future?
Recent initiatives to expand and improve MWR include the following:
- The recreation accreditation process has been established, which ensures a high level of accountability throughout recreation and provides a benchmark for municipal recreation programs.
- The Warrior Adventure Quest program is designed to support needs identified by returning Soldiers for adventurous outdoor activities, in particular activities that create high-adrenaline experiences.
- The General Libraries Information System is a Web-based service that provides online access to library services for the Soldier in the barracks at home or forward-deployed.
- BOSS is expanding its programming and actively seeking ways to support deployed Soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan.
- Many MWR programs and activities offer discounted or free admission to Families of deployed Soldiers.
- Funding for intramural sports leagues has been expanded to allow Soldiers and Family members to join community leagues if unit deployments have impacted the military league's ability to field teams.
- A new Armed Forces Recreation Center has opened on Fort Story, Va., and will soon be expanded to include conference and resort amenities.
- The Armed Forces Recreational Machine program is providing phone, Internet access, cable television service, and in some cases, laptop computers to warriors in transition staying in Army lodging or in billeting supported by the Army Lodging program.
- Benefits of Army recreation is a newly developed system containing measurement tools that document the impact of recreation programs on the mission and on recreation service-wide.
- Centrally funded turnkey events provided to installations are being expanded to more Soldiers deployed.
Why is this important to the Army?
Despite many constraints attributable to the prosecution of the war on terror, MWR programs provide innovative, efficient and effective customer-focused activities, and make the most productive use of existing resources. MWR goes where the Soldier goes, offering morale-building recreational activities at home and down-range. In keeping with the Army Family Covenant, MWR programs and activities help Soldiers and Families enjoy a quality of life commensurate with their dedication and sacrifices.
Web site: U.S. Army MWR
- 2008 Strategic Communication Guide - Read the 2008 Army Strategic Communication Guide for key messages and updates
- Strategic Communication Coordination Group (SCCG) Workspace
- Army Public Affairs Portal
- Stories of Valor