Roads Pave the Way to Stability

News and Press Release
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A community connects with their local government through a road-graveling project

Road projects are part of USAID’s continued efforts to address priority grievances of communities in unstable areas with the aim of improving linkages between the communities and their local government.

Sholgara District is located in the southern part of Balkh Province at a strategic crossroads between several districts. The stability of the district has a significant impact on the security situation in the entire province.

Korbaqa Khana Village, an isolated village, is located 4 km from the center of Sholgara District and 45 km from the provincial center. Poor road conditions had severed area residents from government services located in the district center. In addition, the poor road conditions prevented Afghan and international security forces from regularly patrolling the area, leaving the village susceptible to insurgent influence and threats.

At the request of the community, USAID funded a 5 km road-graveling project in Korbaqa Khana Village to connect the community with the local government. In support of the project, the community provided 15 percent of the project costs through a contribution of unskilled labor. Project implementation included removing rocks and stones from the roadway, digging ditches on the side of the road to prevent road washout, and pouring gravel on the evened road. Despite ongoing threats from insurgents, collaboration between the community and the local Afghan government resulted in a successful project completion.

During the closing ceremony in May 2011, the representative from the Provincial Line Department of Economy thanked USAID for the financial support and emphasized the role of such initiatives in improving the link between communities and their government and increasing stability in Sholgara District.

USAID facilitates partnerships between community-based organizations, traditional leadership, and the Afghan government to identify sources of instability and address community grievances through small-scale community level projects.