Beauty salon

Afghan life in Liberty Village includes newly opened beauty salon

McGUIRE-DIX-LAKEHURST COMMON BASE – An Afghan refugee camp here, which welcomed its first baby several weeks ago, has now hosted a wedding.

The ceremony on September 23 – with the bride wearing a traditional caramel-colored gown with a long gold-edged sash and the groom wearing a blue plaid shirt, pants and sneakers – was among several touching moments documented by South Jersey military photographers. based.

Other recently released photos showed Afghan fathers hugging their young sons during tearful meetings in a community called Liberty Village.

The photos, although often framed to protect identities, offer a glimpse into life in a camp that has remained forbidden.

Some show beauticians cutting hair and threading eyebrows in a newly opened beauty salon. Others represent skewers of meat cooking on a grill on “Kebab Day”, children playing and women hanging up laundry to dry.

One photo simply shows an ambulance in the complex. It was published to note the birth of a child in Liberty Village on August 29.

Following:Medford toy store owners organize toy drive for Afghan refugees

Following:Afghans at Base South Jersey aided by Air National Guard personnel from many states

Wedding photographs include photos of volunteer DJs in military fatigues – New Jersey Air National Guard twins Cloetel and Loreal Best – and a large cake under a topper of two newlyweds.

Army cameras also recorded appearances of elected officials and other dignitaries at the camp, including a visit on Monday by Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin III.

An Afghan bride and groom celebrate their wedding at Liberty Village, Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, September 23, 2021.

Austin’s tour took place as the base expanded living quarters to a population of up to 13,000. The base posted photos of construction equipment adding new living quarters to Liberty Village, which already includes a large tent city, on September 21.

A beauty salon has opened for Afghans living at Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst.

“Future facilities planned for construction include Liberty Market, where Afghans can purchase food and household items,” the base said on Saturday.

Authorities have estimated the camp’s population could reach 13,000, creating a larger community than southern Jersey towns like Burlington City or Haddon Heights.

An Afghan is reunited with his son at Liberty Village, Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, Sept. 18, 2021.

Austin’s tour followed a visit on Saturday by senior officials of the US Air Force, including General Charles Q. Brown Jr., chief of staff of the military branch.

“It’s impressive to see what has been going on here for a month,” Brown said in the statement.

The 42,000-acre base is home to Afghans who fled their country last month following a Taliban takeover.

The Afghans, who could stay at the base for up to a year, include people who have assisted US military forces over a 20-year period, as well as members of their families.

The South Jersey site is one of eight military bases housing Afghan evacuees in the United States.

Jim Walsh covers public safety, economic development, and other topics for the Courier-Post, the Burlington County Times, and the Daily Journal.

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