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Australia's Special Envoy for Afghanistan and Pakistan

In December 2014, Mr Ric Wells was appointed as Australia's Special Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan, demonstrating the Government's commitment to coordinated and effective regional and international diplomacy. Mr Wells replaced Australia’s former Special Envoy for Afghanistan and Pakistan, Mr Paul Grigson, who served in the role from 2013-2014.

Last Updated: 26 June 2013

Direct Aid Program - Electrician and wiring construction training

Direct Aid Progam (DAP) funding from the Australian Embassy in Kabul provided training for 30 students in wiring and electrics to help them find jobs in construction-related industries around Kabul. The workshops were run by a local NGO and the participants came from a local orphanage.

The trainees were taught a number of trade skills, including: how to use tools correctly, rules and regulations of the trade, working with sketches, bench work and measuring, making electrical joints, identifying and connecting circuits, connecting and reading voltometers, repairing household appliances, tracing faults, installing industrial and domestic wiring systems and dealing with fuses.

The Deputy Minister of Labour and Social Affairs visited the training centre during the program, and Australian Ambassador to Afghanistan presided at the graduation ceremony where participants were handed graduation certificates. These certificates provide proof of training and can be used by participants to secure future work around Kabul.

Some of the graduates have found work and are earning an income from the electrical trade. Other graduates are looking for work and some are planning to open their own workshops or work with others. The orphanage is planning more training.

The Direct Aid Program (DAP) is a flexible small grants program funded from Australia’s aid budget and managed through the department’s overseas posts.

Trainees learning electrical trade skills in Kabul. Credit: Revival of Professional Skills for Afghanistan (2016)