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KAPISA PROVINCE, Afghanistan - U.S. Air Force 2nd Lt. Ashley Skillman of Wichita, Kan., Kapisa Provincial Reconstruction Team public affairs officer, visits with a local shop owner in the Nijarb bazaar during a dismounted-presence patrol Dec. 13. The PRT patrolled the market to collect local feedback regarding recently completed development projects and their impact on the Nijrab population. The mission of Kapisa PRT is to help facilitate the local and national governments of Afghanistan working together to provide for the development and security needs of the Afghan people. (Photo by U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Kyle Brasier, Kapisa Provincial Reconstruction Team)KAPISA PROVINCE, Afghanistan – Members of Kapisa Provincial Reconstruction Team conducted a dismounted presence patrol through the Nijrab market Dec. 13 to mingle with members of the village and collect local assessments of recently completed projects in the area.



Within the last three months many projects the PRT and Kapisa provincial government worked together to complete multiple projects to including multiple roads, two schools and a district courthouse.  

“A lot has been done in terms of development, but our measure of success is determined by whether or not the facilities and resources are truly assisting the people of Nijrab,” said U.S. Army Sgt. 1st Class Tyler Youngs of East Leroy, Mich., Kapisa PRT civil affairs.

During the patrol, many market business owners expressed gratitude for resources that the PRT provided in conjunction with the government of Kapisa.  

One particular shop owner explained that the newly paved market road, which was funded by the PRT, has had a profound effect on his business. “Before, it took four hours to drive to Kabul,” he said through an interpreter. “Now it only takes two.”

With the ability to travel from one location to another in a substantially shorter timeframe, business appears to have improved for Nijrab shop owners.

“Based off of what I saw today, I’d say the market is doing extremely well,” said U.S. Army 1st Lt. Eric Bowlin from Worcester, Mass., Kapisa PRT security forces platoon leader. “Today was the busiest I’ve ever seen the market. People were coming and going, a wide assortment of shops were open and there was even some construction going on, which is a positive sign of expansion.”  

When asked which recently constructed project best assisted the people of Nijrab, schools held the majority of local votes.

“We’re very happy with all of the projects, but the schools have helped us the most,” said Allha Mohammad, a Nijrab store owner.

Before the schools were constructed, classes were held in private homes, supplies were very limited and children had to study on the ground, he explained.  

One child, who attends the local school, eagerly showcased what he’s learned by introducing himself in perfect English.  

In addition to collecting local feedback regarding recently completed development projects and their impact on the Nijrab population, PRT members also took note of local concerns and areas of opportunity for future projects within the region.

“During my conversation with local Nijrab citizens, water supply was identified as a primary concern,” said U.S. Army Sgt. Kenneth Ciesla of Sturbridge, Mass., Kapisa PRT security forces. “Right now, the people have to walk more than 20 minutes to retrieve water from a nearby stream.”

Youngs said it’s important for the PRT to conduct presence patrols like this to remain aware of local concerns and problems.  

“By directly speaking with the local population and asking for their input, we’re able to ensure that we’re focusing our efforts on projects that the people need and want, rather than what we think should be done for them,” he said.

Prior to leaving, many PRT members supported local business by indulging in a little personal shopping of their own ¬¬? purchasing vibrantly colored headscarves, local fruits and vegetables.

“I believe today’s mission was very rewarding,” said U.S. Air Force Master Sgt. Betsy Johnson from Marinette, Wis., Kapisa PRT medic. ‘By interacting on a social and consumer level, we were able to strengthen relations with the local community. Overall it was a very positive experience for everyone.”

Kapisa PRT assists the Government of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan in providing a secure, stable environment for reconstruction efforts by increasing the capability and capacity of government officials. The PRT uses development projects like those in Nijrab to connect the Kapisa government with the people and improve quality of life in the province.KAPISA PROVINCE, Afghanistan - U.S. Air Force 2nd Lt. Ashley Skillman of Wichita, Kan., Kapisa Provincial Reconstruction Team public affairs officer, visits with a local shop owner in the Nijarb market during a dismounted presence patrol Dec. 13. The PRT patrolled the market to collect local feedback regarding recently completed development projects and their impact on the Nijrab population. The mission of Kapisa PRT is to help facilitate the local and national governments of Afghanistan working together to provide for the development and security needs of the Afghan people. (Photo by U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Kyle Brasier, Kapisa Provincial Reconstruction Team) KAPISA PROVINCE, Afghanistan - U.S. Air Force 2nd Lt. Ashley Skillman, public affairs officer for Kapisa Provincial Reconstruction Team from Wichita, Kan., visits with a local shop owner in the Nijarb market during a dismounted-presence patrol here, Dec. 13. The PRT patrolled the market to collect local feedback regarding recently-completed development projects and their impact on the Nijrab population. The mission of Kapisa PRT is to help facilitate the local and national governments of Afghanistan working together to help provide for the development and security needs of the Afghan people. (Photo by U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Kyle Brasier, Kapisa Provincial Reconstruction Team) KAPISA PROVINCE, Afghanistan - Members of Kapisa Provincial Reconstruction Team conduct a dismounted presence patrol though the Nijrab market Dec. 13. The PRT patrolled the market to collect local feedback regarding recently completed development projects and their impact on the Nijrab population. The mission of Kapisa PRT is to help facilitate the local and national governments of Afghanistan working together to provide for the development and security needs of the Afghan people. (Photo by U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Kyle Brasier, Kapisa Provincial Reconstruction Team) KAPISA PROVINCE, Afghanistan - Grain and seeds sit ready to be sold at the Nijrab market during a dismounted presence patrol by the Kapisa Provincial Reconstruction Team Dec. 13. The PRT patrolled the market to collect local feedback regarding recently completed development projects and their impact on the Nijrab population. The mission of Kapisa PRT is to help facilitate the local and national governments of Afghanistan working together to provide for the development and security needs of the Afghan people. (Photo by U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Kyle Brasier, Kapisa Provincial Reconstruction Team) ng a dismounted presence patrol by the KapKAPISA PROVINCE, Afghanistan - U.S. Army Staff Sgt. Dana Miller, Kapisa Provincial Reconstruction Team squad leader from Agawam, Mass., conducts security during a dismounted presence patrol in the Nijrab market Dec. 13. The PRT patrolled the market to collect local feedback regarding recently completed development projects and their impact on the Nijrab population. The mission of Kapisa PRT is to help facilitate the local and national governments of Afghanistan working together to provide for the development and security needs of the Afghan people. (Photo by U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Kyle Brasier, Kapisa Provincial Reconstruction Team)

 

Last Updated on Thursday, 16 December 2010 03:05
 

    

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