PAKTYA PROVINCE, Afghanistan – Soldiers of the 2-45th Agribusiness Development Team inspected ongoing projects at a high school during a mission conducted in Zormat District, Feb. 27.
Ghulam Ali, the headmaster at Zormat high school, met the ADT and took them on a tour of the school’s poultry training.
“Upon graduation, they will receive chickens to take home and spread that knowledge to farmers in their villages,” said Ali. “The training is important to Afghans. “Spreading knowledge is something Afghans can take pride in and continue to spread, even after the U.S. has departed.”
U.S. Army Spc. Crystal Sims, a project manager for the ADT from Duncan, Okla., asked about the students’ progress in the class which began a week ago and will graduate in seven weeks.
“The students will learn the various breeds of chickens in Afghanistan,” said Sims. “The training will cover the entire life cycle of chickens; from birth to full grown, to egg production and finally through processing the chickens for consumption.”
At the end of the training, the graduates will receive 20 chickens, one watering container, a bag of chicken feed and a chicken coop, said Sims. The ADT will continue to monitor their progress with follow-up visits.
While the poultry assessment was ongoing, U.S. Army Sgt. 1st Class Billy Payne, from Aubrey, Texas, senior project manager for the ADT, inspected a gate being constructed at the school.
“The gate should be completed in a week,” said Payne. “The gate will allow easier access to the agricultural training center, located on the school grounds.”
In addition to the poultry training and gate assessment, the ADT also distributed school supplies to Ali. The supplies were donated from several sources in the U.S. and specifically Oklahoma.
“We are grateful for all the ADT gives to support education in Zormat,” said Ali.
The ADT is coordinating with Zormat officials for additional sustainable agricultural projects.
According to the ADT, using sustainable farming methods is critical to the U.S. efforts in helping build the relationship between the Afghan government and its citizens.