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PRT Joins Forces With World Food Program to Help Afghans

By Staff Sgt. Nicholas Lutton, USA
Special to American Forces Press Service

FORWARD OPERATING BASE SALERNO, Afghanistan, April 25, 2006 – U.S. military officials from the Mehtar Lam Provincial Reconstruction Team met with Ussama Osman, the eastern region head of office for the U.N. World Food Program, on April 20 to discuss cooperative efforts on projects between the two organizations.

"It was a very successful meeting to develop opportunities for the PRT and WFP to work together," said PRT commander Army Lt. Col. Anthony Feagin. "Everyone committed to meeting again to share information on current and future planned projects."

PRTs work in concert with the Afghan government and are responsible for assessing the needs of local communities and facilitating the means to improve the quality of life.

Feagin said the relationship with the WFP stems from a previous partnership resulting in a celebration of International Women's Day on March 8.

"We look forward to working with other nongovernmental organizations," Feagin said. "They know we are here to help -- they know we are constructing roads and buildings, but we also want to help with the other opportunities."

The PRT has plans to assist with teaching fish-farming and private business to Afghan men and bee-keeping and handicrafts to women.

"We wanted to help because of the crafts they showed us at the International Women's Day celebration," Feagin said. "The nation's officials have a great capability and capacity to teach skills that will last far into the future."

He said plans call for other nongovernmental groups to partner with the Mehtar Lam team.

(Army Staff Sgt. Nicholas Lutton is assigned to the 345th Mobile Public Affairs Detachment.)

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