Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Afghanistan Schools 2 each.

The picture to the left was painted by my sister, I hope she doesn't kill me for showing you and telling about the symbolism. It is fitting for this post both in timeliness, as she just finished it, and school is starting all over the world.. And because as she said, better than I will, the ripple effect of education is impossible to measure. I hope that the ripples that we help to create here do some good for years to come.

A Couple of days ago, it seems like a long time now, but in reality it was only 8 days ago tops, my crew of guys and I along with the ANA delivered about 140 packets of school supplies to 140 students, kids aged 4 on up. We gave a box of teacher supplies to the two teachers who taught these folks. The US Government did not buy the supplies we handed out, they came from people who responded to emails from me in this case, although others have supplies coming in as well. Our friends and families, and their friends have responded generously. We received supplies from people on the east coast and west coast as well as the Midwest, I have said thank you a couple of times, but you probably can't say that to many times.

It is interesting to me how my perspective has changed in 8 days on some of the people who were involved in this, some people have improved in my estimation, some have fallen in my estimation. What is also true is that those people didn't change, only my perception has changed. We are all good in some areas, and not so good in other areas. Over here knowing your companions and neighbors is part of doing business and staying secure.

The one thing that has not changed is that the children, all over the world are our collective future. I have some pictures I was not able to publish earlier I hope you like. These are two schools, one is a torn apart hotel, with no amenities other than walls, and the other is a 16 room new building built by a local man who has many roles in this community, and in my stay here.
This is 80 Kids with 1 teacher and 1 room. I really like this picture.
McGiver took these pictures, he is a Grandfather I think, and did one heck of a job getting these very shy kids to work with him.
The guys on the right in the background are village elders, they would like a well and building for this school. I can't blame them.
Kids are great, they are openly curious, and at this age have not got any natural animosity towards anyone.
I don't know what the graffiti means. I like the kid in the baseball hat...

This is the second school, These girls are shy and adorable.
I really don't know what they thought, or if they knew what to make of all the soldiers coming and giving them things.
The color in this country is mostly worn on little girls like this. Men and boys all wear earth tones.
Smiling and alert, open to being friendly.
I think if you took the ziplock bags out of the picture it could have been taken any time in the last 50 years.
This is a far cry from the school the other children are attending about 8 miles away.
We provided each child with a pad of paper, some pencils and pens, erasers, a couple of pieces of candy, the girls pretty much got the stuffed animals, the boys pretty much received the cars. They were both hits. We will do this again, if we have an opportunity and supplies. Hats and Mittens or gloves are a good choice, and they love soccer balls. I think that is all for now, but I appreciate your interest, and hope you enjoy the pictures. Keith

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