Khosiyat Karimova (right) and Gulru Salimova (left) are proud to be entrusted with caring for their trees. Copyright: WFP/Murodali Nurov

The Grass Is Greener In This Tajik School

Qalai Maksud, TAJIKISTAN -- For Khosiyat and Gulru, second grade students in School #86 in Qalai Maksud village, this school year is different. The school, which is in Tajikistan’s deforested eastern Rasht district, has received fruit trees from WFP and the two girls are now responsible for taking care of a pear tree and an apple tree each.


Tajikistan is a landlocked, low-income, food-deficit country with a population of approximately 7.5 million. The percentage of arable land in the country is barely 7 percent and three-quarters of the population live in rural areas. The rugged, mountainous terrains pose enormous challenges for people, especially during the winter when bad weather and natural disasters impede movement and routinely trigger energy and food shortages.