Donor / contractor FAO
Period October 2016 – October 2017
Area 20 provinces

After a successful pilot project, conducted in 2015/2016, this FAO PPR project aims to bring Afghanistan to stage 2 of the progressive control/eradication pathway for PPR, as outlined in the FAO and OIE Strategy. Reaching stage 2 means that the country is implementing targeted control activities in productive sectors that are considered for the national economy or key for disease control purposes.

Main target animals of the project are the sheep and goats belonging to the nomadic pastoralists of Afghanistan (the Kuchi). Kuchi play an important role in mutton and goat meat production in Afghanistan and their livestock are a potential source of infectious diseases because of their nomadic way of living.

The project is expected to produce the following two outcomes:
• Small ruminants of the Kuchi are protected against PPR and will not suffer of any loss in terms of mortality or reduced production attributable to this disease,
• The Kuchi will have an improved awareness on the most important infectious diseases of their livestock, and the benefit of applying preventive vaccination for their animals.

DCA will select 288 VFUs to be engaged in the PPR vaccination campaigns and the delivery of extension services. During the first year, the VFUs will vaccinate all animals in the targeted Kuchi flocks. Following the first year only the newly born animals will be vaccinated. In total, about 4.5 million small ruminants will be vaccinated against PPR.

In addition, the VFUs will create special extension groups of 10-15 pastoralists per group, that will meet twice a month. In the extension meetings, clinical signs of infectious and zoonotic diseases will be illustrated, and awareness on the need for preventive vaccinations will be raised. Some 115,000 beneficiaries will be reached, organised in 1,150 rotating extension groups.

To assess the efficacy of the vaccine, the VFUs will collect pre and post vaccination blood samples of 300 animals of 6 – 12 months old. These serum samples will be tested by the Central Veterinary Diagnostic and Research Laboratory in Kabul. The epidemiological data gathered will be valuable for the future surveillance and eradication of PPR from Afghanistan.