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School Bells Ring in Rahim Kalay

February 12, 2011

“Because of the improvement of the security situation, the children are now allowed to go to school, they are coming and greeting us every time we go on patrol. They even come to say hello and talk with us.”

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Children in Rahim Kalay, Afghanistan prepare for the first class of the morning in their newly built classroom.

Due to 4th Company, 1st Battalion Irish Guard’s aggressive assault on local insurgency over the past few months, Afghanistan’s newest generation is able to pursue an education. During a routine patrol of the local area and the new classroom, Irish Guard soldiers and Danish Civil Military Cooperation team members were able to observe a class in progress Feb. 6.

“There were 25 students having a class with their two teachers,” said Lt. Cmdr. Noe Isgaard, officer-in-charge, Civil Military Cooperation Support Team 3. “The kids were learning algebra and math. The teachers down there teach from Saturday to Thursday, from 8 till 10 for the children of Rahim Kalay and the surrounding areas.”

The markedly improved security climate will not go unappreciated in the future, as the Civil Military Cooperation team is already making plans to further enhance Rahim’s education program. A larger school is already in the making in order to accommodate more students.

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One of the teachers working at Rahim Kalay’s new classroom tutors one of his students.

“Hopefully the school in Rahim will open in approximately two to three months,” Isgaard said. “We hope to get some teachers from Gereshk to come and live in the village and teach the children. This will also make room for new children, not just 25 or 30 at a time, but much more. We’ll also have classes for females only.”

“Education is the key for building up a country,” Olsen said. “Education is a way out of this farming country and makes them think outside the box. It gives the kids an opportunity to be something other than farmers. For kids to know that there are things happening around the country than just in their own town, makes them understand that education is vital for the future down here.”

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