KINGSTOWN, SVG (BreadFruit News) – Vincentian Fiesha Greene has been featured in the latest Royal Navy campaign to highlight the achievements of persons from Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) background who serve in the military. October is Black History month which has been celebrated for more than 30 years although it is dwarfed by the media attention and events in the US which celebrates black people in February.
Fiesha speaking to the Royal Navy media team said:
“I grew up in St. Vincent and the Grenadines, and at 17 moved to the UK with my family. I attended a Sixth Form in Southampton, but a couple of years later my family decided to moved back to the Caribbean. My cousin was in the military and told me it would take me places – I’d see the world.”
“So at 19, I can say I made the best decision of my life by joining the Royal Navy. It was a challenge at first, living so far away from my family and friends, suddenly in new surroundings, but it taught me to be self-reliant and to have faith in myself.”
The Petty Officer (PO) which is the equivalent rank of a sergeant in the Army spoke about starting out a career in an institution that had few opportunities for foreigners:
“At that time there were only a few jobs open to people from the Commonwealth, and two jobs in particular stood out to me – one was engineering, but I’m not handy with my hands – so I decided to become a Supply Chain Logistician.”
“My first sea unit was HMS Ark Royal, and it was there I regained my love of sports. I joined the Navy Women’s Cricket and Royal Navy Women Rugby teams, and eventually represented the Royal Navy at the UK Armed Forces level. Both sports have taught me so much about teamwork, and have given me the opportunity to meet people whom I would go as far as saying are my family.”
The sports enthusiast is well-known for her support to other Commonwealth nationals who make the Navy their career and the UK their home as a member of the Royal Navy Commonwealth Network.
“On HMS Illustrious, I was promoted to Leading Hand of the Mess, learning leadership skills and a maturity that made me feel confident in being a leader. I’m proud that other women onboard could come to me with worries, concerns and sensitive matters. After that, I worked at HMS Nelson for a bit before giving birth to my daughter, who is now 5.”
“That’s what I’m most proud of – she’s changed the way I look at life and how I live my life. I’m now a Petty Officer based in HMS Nelson, but I’m very ambitious, trying to climb that ladder as far as I can – I want to become a Warrant Officer and continue to share my experiences with Commonwealth members of the Royal Navy.”