Supported by the Engineer Soldiers of the U.S. Army


The Kosovo School Project, supporting the Dituria school in Mirosavlje, was started in July 2000 by a West Point LT and the soldiers 16th Engineers. During a routine escort mission to a local school, the Engineers saw an opportunity to help a community and a future generation of Kosovars. What they saw was a dilapidated school with poor facilities. Kids ran around with worn out shoes and tattered clothes. Signs of the war were everywhere as bombed out buildings and garbage littered the countryside. Beyond this the soldiers saw something else. They saw happy, excited young children, much like the children we all grew up with in the U.S.: carefree, innocent and unaware of the situation surrounding them. This struck a chord in the Bravo Company soldiers and they knew they had to do something.

The West Point LT spearheaded the effort and wrote a letter to his hometown paper to ask for donations. Much to his surprise, he received an overwhelming response. Donations poured in from the people of his hometown in VA, and as word spread, and other soldiers solicited donations, many more were received. Within the next several months, over 140 packages were received containing school supplies, clothing and toys. The soldiers of the 16th also built goals for the soccer field and a volleyball net.

The 16th Engineers' tour came to an end in Kosovo in December 2000. The soldiers of the 40th Engineers, from Baumholder Germany, took over the 16th's peacekeeping mission. The West Point LT asked his classmate, LT Antonio Buehler to further the project. In the following six months the 40th Engineers continued to make the project a success. LT Buehler and several other soldiers wrote home asking for addtional donations. They also wrote to over 50 companies. This resulted in over 10,000 pounds of clothing and supplies being donated from gererous individuals in 14 different states. They also acquired humanitarian aid funding through the Department of Defense to have the school repaired. This helped equip the school with running water and further improved the school by fixing the windows and floors. Additionally, they were able to deliver supplies to four additional schools throughout Kosovo to include a Serb school and deliverd clothing to a Gypsy community whose children do not attend school.

The 40th Engineers' tour came to an end in Kosovo in May 2001. The soldiers of the 11th Engineers, from Fort Stewart Georgia, took over the 40th's peacekeeping mission. They received support from the patriotic volunteers from the Adopt A Platoon program (www.adoptaplatoon.org) as part of their �Operation Crayon� where they send school supplies and clothes for the children.

If anyone has further information on the current state of this program please email Antonio Buehler at [email protected] so we can update the page. If anyone from the 11th EN has a listing of what they accomplished I can then update this page. Furthermore, to the new unit now in Kosovo please send me a synopsis of what you are all doing if the project still carries on.


Accomplishments to date (as of 29 May 2001) include:
  1. Distributed over 610 packages, 10000 pounds, of school supplies and clothes to over 3400 students at five different schools.
  2. Built soccer goals for the soccer field and a volleyball court.
  3. Had selected classrooms retiled.
  4. Provided a pump to transport potable water to the school.
  5. Built a shed to house and protect the water pump.
  6. Replaced broken windows in the school.
  7. Taught mine awareness classes to the children to warn them of the dangers of unexploded ordinance.
  8. Endeared themselves to the people of Mirosavlje, furthering U.S. relations and interests in Kosovo.

Future Goals

Future goals include:
  1. Supply the school with shoes and clothing for the children.
  2. Refloor the school.
  3. Upgrade the heating system.
  4. Continue to supply the children with school supplies.
  5. Construct a playground.
  6. Continue to provide good role models for the children of Kosovo.
  7. Insulating the bathroom and water tanks before winter
  8. Replacing all doorlocks
  9. Constructing coat racks for the children