Mission East’s support requested at Afghan Agricultural Fair
The bags with dried squash, apricot, chilli and other products are all decorated with the Danish flag. A sticker tells people that the products are "Produced by a group of women from Baharak".
We are at an Agricultural Fair in a great white tent in northern Afghanistan, organised by the Afghan Ministry of Agriculture. Here, Mission East has a stand where jars of cherry jam are displayed side by side with honey, pickled vegetables, and bags of dried apple.
All the products have in common the fact that they are produced by poor men and women who all have received support from Mission East to cultivate the land in their village. They have been educated in how to gain the highest output, and how to process the harvest so they are able to sell their products. Because of the help, several thousand families are now able to support themselves.
"Badakhshan is gifted with a lot of natural resources. The peace-loving and hardworking people can get a lot of benefits from vegetable and fruit trees if we guide them in modern agricultural techniques. Today’s agricultural fair will provide them with a platform to get familiar with new ideas and agricultural techniques," said the Afghan Agricultural Minister in his speech at the fair.
Afghanistan desperately needs the help. At the end of the fair, representatives from several poor villages in the Badakhshan region came to request Mission East’s support. They too need a helping hand to be able to fight their way out of poverty.
The picture shows Fouzia, Mission East’s female agriculture worker, explaining to a group of men about food preservation techniques.