Female ‘Broncos’ build bonds as Afghani girls learn language

| July 7, 2011 | 1 Comment
Pvt. Erin Murphy (center), combat medic, 3rd BSTB, 3rd BCT, 25th ID, shares a laugh with local girls at Zangui Village, Afghanistan, recently.

Pvt. Erin Murphy (center), combat medic, 3rd BSTB, 3rd BCT, 25th ID, shares a laugh with local girls at Zangui Village, Afghanistan, recently.

Story and Photo by
Spc. Hillary Rustine
3rd Brigade Combat Team Public Affairs, 25th Infantry Division

NANGARHAR PROVINCE, Afghanistan — Afghan girls had a case of the nervous giggles, when the Female Engagement Team from “Task Force Bronco” began tutoring them in English, here, recently.

Female volunteers in 3rd Brigade Special Troops Battalion, 3rd Bde. Combat Team, 25th Infantry Division, visited Zangui Village, here, to help Afghan girls, ranging in age from 12-20, learn English.

“Many of the local girls weren’t doing so well in their English class, so the FET said they would help during their summer break,” said 1st Lt. Denise Quigley, 3rd BSTB. “The communication techniques have greatly improved from the first class.”

Even after the second class, the FET said improvements were noticeable. Both Soldiers and local girls were more comfortable with each other, in comparison to their first meeting.

“We are at a starting point,” said Pvt. Erin Murphy, combat medic, 3rd BSTB. “When they start understanding, they smile and get excited.

“This time, there was more interaction, and the girls were less shy and tried to communicate more,” she said.

“We are excited that we are learning English from other women (who are) Americans,” said one of the Afghan girls.

The interaction between the FET and local women is special. Due to cultural differences, men are not allowed to directly interact with women, thus losing the ability to effectively communicate with half the population, Quigley said.

“I’m trying to better Afghanistan a little bit before I leave,” Murphy said, who also volunteers to teach a younger group of girls, ages 4-12, on Saturdays.

The Soldiers said they believe bonds created through tutoring are starting to bridge cultural and language barriers. They hope, that with time, these bonds will grow into a true friendship.

 

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Category: Deployed Forces, News

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  1. MARU says:

    I'm so proud of our soldiers!!!!!

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