By Cpl. Sébastien Pisani
First published in
SFOR Informer#112, May 3, 2001
Sipovo - There was an unusual activity in this Saturday
morning. Like every week, the market attracted artisans and farmers
of the surrounding areas. But behind the group of huts where people
negotiated carpets, sheepskins and fresh eggs, a group of children
were busy on the banks of the Pliva River.
Accompanied by two British soldiers of the battalion of support
and logistics (CSS Bn), 1st General Support Regiment (Royal Logistic
Corps), they were collecting garbage in big bins arranged near
the road. A lorry of the public utilities company of Sipovo left
for the rubbish tip, two kilometres from downtown. An SFOR vehicle
parked near the children, who immediately begun loading it with
programme set up with the municipality, the schools and the local
associations by the previous British battalion which left several
weeks ago, took shape (see SFOR Informer edition 107). This cleaning
day illustrated the support that SFOR wishes to bring to local
projects. "We are deeply lacking assets. The battalion, which
literally just arrived, acknowledges the list of actions which
had been established," said Dragica Dakic, manager of the
public utilities company of Sipovo.
the playground of Nemanja Vlatkovic primary school, children abandoned
their usual games for the complete cleaning of green areas and
steps of the main stairs. "This day dedicated to the cleaning
of the town is a very good idea. One of the first things we have
to teach to the children is hygiene and neatness," said Mira
Trivuncic, one of the schoolteachers. A little bit farther, SFOR
soldiers took up one of the 20 points of collection in the town.
"People see servicemen helping the community. I think this
is a constructive event, even if it is not our primary mission,"
said Cpl. Sean Read. Nineteen British soldiers and two lorries
were sent by the support and logistics battalion to take part
in this spring cleaning day.
"There is a real will to improve here the life quality. SFOR
participates within the limits of its available resources. It
is essential that the local authorities get involved in this type
of event," said 2nd Lt. Gill Neil, G5 liaison officer. Children
have been the main players in this operation; one can now hope
that the adults will follow the example of the youngest.
Nations of SFOR: UK