MAIMANAH, Afghanistan – The staff of 3rd Battalion, 6th Field Artillery Regiment, operating in Faryab Province in Regional Command – North, Afghanistan, have facilitated avenues for providing low-level community development.
The implementation of several quick impact projects in the provincial capital of Maimanah and surrounding districts have had a tremendous outcome on the day-to-day lives for thousands of residents.
Funded by the Commander’s Emergency Response Program, the battalion identified community needs through discussions held with key local leaders and during patrols throughout rural areas.
Under the CERP program, U.S. forces can draw and complete projects that cost no more than $5,000 at one time. Recently, 3-6 FA has focused on locations in Maimanah. These projects can affect several hundred to possibly thousands of local residents. The overall effect is designed to meet an immediate need, but also continues to demonstrate the Afghan government’s and ISAF’s commitment to the people of Afghanistan.
The Maimanah city hospital has developed slowly since the battalion arrived, but hospital leaders were challenged with several large areas of dirt that turn into mud in the winter and create extremely dusty conditions in the summer, resulting in breathing problems for patients. Thanks to CERP, the dirt area has been paved and upgraded to a pedestrian walk area between clinics, along with being used for hospital vehicle parking.
Another benefit of a local project is the short-term job opportunities for local residents who work as “day laborers” for local contractors.
The hospital project employed 15 local workers for two weeks.
A Maimanah girls’ school also benefited from the use of CERP funds. Purchases of basic furniture and computer equipment allow the school’s staff to better administer tests and track student attendance. This school serves nearly 3,700 girls, and the purchases will be a welcomed sight as they return from their winter break.
These small, quick impact projects have allowed 3-6 FA the ability to affect thousands of Afghans during its 10 months in Faryab.
Because these projects are identified by the people, it has been one of Centaur Battalion’s greatest weapons in the fight against the insurgency, by bringing quick development opportunities where they are needed most.
(1st Brigade Combat Team Public Affairs Office)