Why do we take everything away from the recruits, even their watches and knowledge of the schedule? Why do we require the men to pass a Saturday inspection that feels impossible? Why do we utilize boot camp-style disciplines? Why does every ALERT man suffer through the pain and struggle of a 24-hour Endurance Hike? Why do we wake guys up in the middle of the night for hikes and team navigation exercises? Why do we put ourselves through the challenge of all of these rigors that come together to create the ALERT experience?
From the very beginning of the ALERT program, we have intentionally created this challenging environment because of how it helps the men grow. The goal of ALERT is to see men who are mature and wholly committed to following Christ as their King, and we know that enduring hardship is one important factor that helps men mature. Hardship isn’t often fun, but the growth that it helps produce is invaluable.
Captain Phillip Vanderford | Unit 41
ALERT Battalion Commanding Officer