Captain Philip Rowland, an Officer from the Army Training Regiment, Winchester (ATR W) has been presented his Queen’s Commendation for Valuable Service (QCVS) award which was announced in the Operational Honours and Awards in March earlier this year.
The QCVS is an emblem of silver oak leaves and is a British civilian and military award that recognises meritorious service during or in support of operations. Capt Rowland was nominated for his award for his achievements during his deployment from January to May 2015 on Op GRITROCK, the humanitarian relief operation to the Ebola outbreak in Sierra Leone.
Brigadier CRV Walker DSO, Head of Strategy at Army Headquarters presented Capt Rowland with his award. His citation read: “Captain Philip Rowland deployed to Sierra Leone in January 2015 to the District Ebola Response Centre (DERC), located in a remote and mountainous area in the north east of the country. Captain Rowland immediately planned and implemented the emergency call centre system, linking the deployed surveillance teams with the DERC operations room, which instantly provided exposure to the scale of the task and allowed the accurate passage of information to Headquarters Combined Joint Inter-Agency Task Force. Captain Rowland was later re-deployed and after a short spell in the Western Area Ebola Response Centre, was promoted to become its Chief of Staff and was given personal responsibility for running all phases of the operation, including the day to day command and control of some 2000 Ebola response staff. He faced enormous difficulties and was required to manage a multitude of partners and aid agencies. In a unique environment, this has been an exceptional performance from a young officer whose actions have undoubtedly saved hundreds of lives.”
Following the presentation a delighted Capt Rowland said: “Today has been most extraordinary, to receive my QCVS award was the pinnacle of the day. To be recognised for the work I carried out in Sierra Leone in a challenging environment was humbling as I feel I was really only doing my job. To also have my father here to witness the presentation of the award, himself a Reservist, was just fantastic.”
Pass out parade
In addition to this momentous event, ATR W held one of the largest pass out parade with four troops (two male and two female) passing out at the same time with an audience made up family and friends. The parade led by The Band of the Royal Logistic Corps saw approximately 118 recruits from different cap badges passing out. Brig Walker was also the inspecting Officer for the parade and he issued a number of prizes to individuals from each of the troops one of which was for Top Recruit, which was awarded to Private Holding from 9 Troop.
Private Holding said: “I feel very proud to be here today, this day felt like a life time away 14 weeks ago. I am overwhelmed to have received the award for Top Recruit it came as a total surprise.”
This course has also seen a significant number of already qualified nurses enter Phase One training and two of the recruits will be promoted on entry to Phase Two Training.