GIRoA Expands Public Health and Humanitarian Assistance to Gorak District
March 17, 2013
KANDAHAR, Afghanistan - Kandahar provincial and district officials visited the Gorak district of Kandahar province for a health shura and humanitarian aid distribution, Mar. 6. The Kandahar Provincial Reconstruction Team (KPRT), a civilian-military team, and the World Food Program (WFP) assisted the Kandahar provincial government to deliver food aid and basic medical supplies needed to local citizens.
Gorak district lies near the Helmand border and is a remote, hard-to-reach area for provincial officials. Provincial Director of Public Health Dr. Pokhla was among the group of Afghans leading the much needed medical supplies to the villagers.
The event, known as the District Health and Humanitarian Assistance Shura focused on reviving Government of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan (GIRoA)-lead polio eradication efforts and reestablishing World Food Program (WFP) food donations in the district. Vaccination initiatives have not made it to Ghorak district in the past two campaign seasons, as vaccinators were unable to access the district due to the lack of governmental presence and mined roads.
The District Governor, following the vaccinations, told Gorak community leaders that vaccinations are for everyone and that child vaccinations should not be neglected because of the conflict. The WFP has not previously had a presence in Gorak due to access issues. This distribution was viewed as an initial incentive for future engagements.
WFP was able to get contact information for the district governor and several community leaders in Gorak, which will help with future distributions in the district.
"In tune with the spirit of our transition-this important event again highlights GIRoA's new leadership capabilities to respond to complex health and humanitarian needs in remote and underserved districts in Kandahar," said Dr. Ahmed Attieg, senior health official at KPRT.
Afghan citizens in Gorak can reasonably expect a clinic in the near future. The current doctor and manager of the make-shift clinic, Qadeem, spoke with the District Governor Duru Khan and Health Minister Pokhla during the shura.
On the aid side, the United Nation's WFP donated seven metric tons of food to local citizens. District governor Duru Khan supervised and was thankful for the World Health Organization's support.