Two Royal Canadian Navy ships have returned to Halifax following an international mission in West Africa.

Friends and family members braved the wet weather to greet the sailors as they sailed into port Tuesday morning.

HMCS Kingston and HMCS Summerside were taking part in Op Projection off the African coast.

The ships deployed in late January.

“The trip was actually the trip of a lifetime,” says Lieutenant-Commander Emily Lambert. “We did a lot of community outreach events with International Women’s Day, so to me, that was especially special for me because we were able to pass on our thoughts to inspire young women that non-traditional jobs are something that they can aspire to.”

Arianna Roberts was among those welcoming their loved ones home. She says she missed her father while he was overseas, but she’s proud of the work he’s done.

“He was helping little children there by bringing some school supplies there, helping build decks and painting daycares,” she says. “I think it’s actually pretty helpful.”

Last month, the crews took part in U.S. Naval Forces Africa's Exercise Obangame Express.

The exercise is meant to build partnerships, promote maritime security and foster relationships in the Gulf of Guinea region.

It focused on maritime interdiction, and board, search and seizure techniques.

The forces says an enhanced naval boarding party also mentored partners to improve their boarding and interdiction skills.

With files from The Canadian Press