OTTAWA - Troops serving in Kandahar, Afghanistan, received a taste of home Canada Day morning when the Canadian Forces Personnel Support Agency (CFPSA) officially opened the first Tim Hortons outlet at a deployed mission.
At 10 a.m. Kandahar time, (1:30 a.m. EST), men and women of the Canadian Forces, along with military from other nations, joined CFPSA Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Major-General Doug Langton, Commander of Task Force Afghanistan (TFA) Brigadier-General David Fraser, and Tim Hortons Director of Business Development Doug Anthony on the Boardwalk at Kandahar Air Field (KAF) for the official opening ceremony.
Gathered around the 40-foot trailer for the ribbon cutting, troops were treated to words of encouragement, appreciation, and Canada Day wishes while enjoying coffee and donuts.
"This is about serving you as you continue to do the outstanding job Canada asks of you," MGen Langton said to the soldiers. "We hope this little piece of home will make your lives in Afghanistan just a little bit easier."
Located on the Boardwalk airstrip next to the American-managed concessions, the Tim Hortons outlet is managed by CFPSA staff. A Tim Hortons store opening crew will be on hand for two to four weeks to ensure that operations are running smoothly and that all products and services meet Tim Hortons standards.
"We will deliver the same great tasting coffee and baked goods that the troops enjoy at home," explained Mr. Anthony from Tim Hortons. "We also look forward to introducing the many soldiers from other nations stationed in Kandahar to the Tim Hortons experience."
The store will serve hot and cold beverages as well as baked goods to the approximately 2,200 CF members and 5,000 personnel from other countries at KAF. Personnel will pay prices comparable to those in Canada and profits made within this project will be reinvested in morale and welfare programs for Canadian Forces members.
The menu at the Tim Hortons at KAF includes:
Mr. Anthony described how the idea of a Tim Hortons in KAF came about. "Several months ago, our President & CEO, Paul House received a call from [Canadian Chief of Defence Staff] General Rick Hillier on behalf of the troops stationed in Kandahar. They had told the General that the one thing they would really like on the base is a Tim Hortons."
"The CFPSA saw this as another opportunity to boost morale and welfare of the troops serving in Kandahar," added MGen Langton. "We have worked closely with Tim Hortons and the Canadian Forces to bring this operation to fruition. This opening in Kandahar is a significant achievement and a true partnership among our three organizations."
Since August 2000, the CFPSA has been providing civilian staff to manage programs and services to boost morale of the CF. From the moment the CF mission in Kabul, Afghanistan, began in July 2003, CFPSA has deployed approximately 50 civilian personnel per six-month rotation.
By delivering in-theatre support programs including retail operations, sports and fitness, show tours, and Home Leave Travel Assistance, CFPSA personnel contribute to the morale and welfare of CF members and their families.
Tim Hortons is Canada's largest coffee and baked goods chain with more than 2,900 stores in Canada and over 290 locations in the United States.
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For more information on CFPSA Deployed Operations please visit http://www.cfpsa.com/
Images: Canadian Forces (CF) Combat Camera plans to provide video footage of Canada Day ceremonies in Afghanistan, available to the media at the following site: http://www.combatcamera.forces.gc.ca/common/combatcamera/news
Posting of imagery is not confirmed. It will depend on operational capabilities from Afghanistan.
Director, Corporate Communications, Tim Hortons
Media Relations Coordinator
Canadian Forces Personnel Support Agency