News>Vasilievskoe villagers take pride in newly renovated school
Sakkaraey Mars Namurbekovich, head of Alanudun Regional Governmental Administration, speaks during a dedication ceremony to celebrate renovations at the Vasilievskoe Kindergarten School in Vasilievskoe, Kyrgyzstan, Feb. 26, 2013. The Transit Center at Manas recently completed a $258,000 humanitarian assistance project to renovate the entire school. Some of the improvements included new electric heaters and a water pump, as well as repairs to the roof. (U.S. Air Force photo/Tech. Sgt. Rachel Martinez)
Children perform a song during a dedication ceremony to celebrate renovations at the Vasilievskoe Kindergarten School in Vasilievskoe, Kyrgyzstan, Feb. 26, 2013. Four times as many children can enroll in the kindergarten now that the school building has been completely renovated. (U.S. Air Force photo/Tech. Sgt. Rachel Martinez)
Sakkaraey Mars Namurbekovich, right, and leadership from the Transit Center at Manas tour a classroom at the Vasilievskoe Kindergarten School in Vasilievskoe, Kyrgyzstan, Feb. 26, 2013. The Transit Center at Manas and the U.S. Embassy in Bishkek partnered with the Kyrgyz Republic government on a humanitarian assistance project to renovate the school building with new windows, floors and lighting in each classroom. Namurbekovich is the head of Alanudun Regional Governmental Administration. (U.S. Air Force photo/Tech. Sgt. Rachel Martinez)
by Tech. Sgt. Rachel Martinez
376th Air Expeditionary Wing Public Affairs
2/28/2013 - VASILIEVSKOE, Kyrgyzstan (AFNS) -- Following the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1990, the Vasilievskoe Kindergarten School sat empty for more than a decade. Since it reopened in 2003, the school house has been in need of extensive repairs.
The Transit Center at Manas and the U.S. Embassy in Bishkek partnered with the Kyrgyz Republic government and the Vasilievskoe villagers to renovate the kindergarten school. A ceremony was held Feb. 26, 2013, to celebrate the completion of those renovations.
The eight-month, $258,000 renovation project included installation of new electric heaters, insulation, windows, doors, flooring and a water pump. Additionally, extensive repairs were performed on the roof and electrical, lighting and plumbing systems.
"This was the second largest project we've had overall," said Staff Sgt. Daniel Skinner, the Transit Center Theater Security Cooperation Division project manager. "This project entailed renovating the entire school; that's not very common."
A project of this magnitude required a strong team to accomplish the task, said Col. William Spangenthal, the 376th Expeditionary Operations Group commander, who attended the dedication ceremony at the renovated kindergarten.
"This team consisted of leaders from the United States Embassy, Transit Center, Kyrgyz government, Vasilievskoe school and our contractor," Spangenthal said. "Today, we not only celebrate the completion of a $258,000 renovation that includes new electric heating, new windows and doors, new flooring, roofing repairs and new insulation. Today we also celebrate the return of students to a comfortable and safe learning environment where the children can focus on their education without distraction."
Before the renovations were complete, the school could only accommodate 42 students; children were on a waiting list to attend the school. Now that the school building is in better condition, the school can hold 170 students, enabling administrators to enroll everyone on the waiting list.
"This project has brought so much joy and happiness to our villagers," said Kushbaeva Manzura Abdullaeva, the Vasilievskoe Kindergarten School director. "Before the renovation project our school didn't have proper windows, flooring or heating. But today, there is very good heating. Our roof was dripping before, now we have a good roof, and they've installed very nice plumping. It is very good for our children as they can stay warm and comfortable now."
The transformation is a noticeable one for all in the village.
"I was excited to see the new building and how well it turned out," said Sakkaraey Mars Namurbekovich, the head of Alanudun Regional Governmental Administration. "While we were coming up to this kindergarten today, what opened up before us was a very magical house. I remember what used to be here -- now look at what it turned out to be. This project was necessary for the people who live in the village, especially the children."
Following the ceremony, school administrators provided a tour of the school, showing off the recent renovations.
"I am very excited to personally view all these improvements," said Spangenthal. "Thank you all for inviting us today and we look forward to continued cooperation and partnership in the future."
3/1/2013 4:06:46 PM ET Good job HA Branch You CE guys are awesome. All of your hard work is going to be enjoyed by many generations to come. Keep up the great work Looks like Seawright Jones and Bastian owe at Pete's...
2/27/2013 7:48:54 AM ET Very nice story. Only wish there had been an exterior photo too.