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Justin M. Stoddard


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Dispatches From Afghanistan #10
September 26, 2009 — 8:23 am

Subject: Justin’s Awsome Update from Afghanistan

Friends! Romans! Countrymen!

OK, a bit dramatic….

Hello, all! I wanted to give everyone an update about what’s going on over here. As you may remember, I sent out an email about a week ago talking about the childcare center located on the campus where I work. The response has been nearly overwhelming and heartfelt. Thank you!

I had a very nice meeting with the lady who runs the center today. We sat and talked for about a 1/2 an hour over tea and cookies. I told her that I had many friends and family who were eager to help. I’m going to be getting a list of specifics tomorrow, but here is what I can tell you:

Some of the items needed:

  • Basic School Supplies: such as pens, pencils, paper, notebooks, crayons, paint, drawing paper, coloring books, glue, scissors, notebooks and the like
  • Toys: Dolls, building blocks, Lego’s, toy cars, stuffed animals, etc…
  • Clothes: These children are from 4 months to 11 years old. (Most of them are around 4 or 5). Girl’s clothing should be modest in color and design
  • Donations: They are in dire need of at least 4 space heaters for their classrooms. I’d have to buy the heaters on the economy here as the electricity requirements are not the same. Any amount of money would be appreciated.
  • Bigger projects: I was shown one of their classrooms that took a direct hit from a mortar a few years ago. It needs to be completely rebuilt. I have no idea how to go about this, but I imagine if I can collect donations or solicit donations from companies or organizations in the states, we could buy the marterials needed here. There are plenty of people where I’m stationed who would love to help build such a place, so labor would not be a problem either.

I’ve uploaded a few pictures of the child care center here: www.flickr.com/cosmicslop I have more, but it’s taking me forever to get them uploaded. Check back from time to time to see what’s new. You’re able to tell by the pictures what they have and what they are lacking.

Onto other things…I taught the students at our training center (the people we are teaching to make maps, do surveys, etc…) how to play hangman and “rock, paper, scissors” today. They were confused as hell about “rock, paper, scissors” but they had fun playing it. Hangman was a real hit. I ended up giving them a 20 minute lecture on letter frequency in the English Language and that in turn turned into a discussion about just how illogical the English Language is.

All is good here. I’m eating well and am getting plenty of exercise. :)

I hope all is well with everyone out there!

I miss you guys!

— Justin M. StoddardComments (0)

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