Human Resources and Logistical Support in Afghanistan
Among Afghanistan's daunting reconstruction challenges are building the capacity of its work force and fledgling government. Under the USAID-funded Human Resources and Logistical Support program (2006–11), IRD engineers made over 20,000 site visits to inspect schools, clinics, roads, and water projects in every corner of Afghanistan. IRD also chaired the Technical Secretariat of the Supreme Council of Water Affairs to develop national strategies for the water sector.
Typical Activities Undertaken by HRLS
- Quality assurance monitoring of over $100 million in health, education, and road construction projects
- Technical review of engineering documents
- Post-occupancy evaluations of hundreds of schools and clinics to confirm USAID's program objectives are being met
- Technical capacity building in the Ministry of Mines, and Ministry of Energy and Water
- Public outreach through print, radio, television, and special event campaigns
- Support to USAID on acute, short-term needs throughout all engineering disciplines, including seismic assessments of existing buildings, and monitoring required reconstruction
- Implementation of a robust database to track and manage USAID programs
- Providing RSO-compliant security for expatriate travel to project locations
Supporting the Mission
More than a contractual relationship, both IRD and USAID viewed the HRLS program as an extension of USAID's permanent staff—capable of adapting quickly to needs as they arise and capable of handling nearly any task put before us so that mission staff can focus on the big picture. This model can be adapted to meet the needs of all sectors within the mission and allowed USAID to meet its objectives without fluctuations to its permanent staff.