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Chris Di Florio - Rowville

Australian Army soldier, Private Chris Di Florio is enabling other Australian Defence Force personnel to perform their jobs safely during their deployments to Kabul, Afghanistan.

He's an infantry soldier from the Brisbane based 8/9th Battalion, Royal Australian Regiment and an integral part of the Force Protection Element (FPE) unit working in Kabul.

The FPE's role is to conduct protected red and green zone road moves in and around Kabul in up-armoured four-wheel-drives, helping ADF personnel safely move around the city.

Once the personnel arrive at their work locations, the FPE soldiers then protect them while they provide an advisory role to their Afghan counterparts.

Pte Di Florio is 25 years of age and the senior Private and second in command within his team.

He joined the Army in 2009, after growing up in Rowville in Melbourne and went to Nazareth College in Noble Park North.

"I previously deployed to Afghanistan in 2012 with MTF 4 assisting with the training and mentoring of Afghan soldiers," Pte Di Florio said.

"My role throughout this current deployment is very different in comparison. Back then I spent a majority of my time outside the wire on patrol in more dangerous areas unlike the city of Kabul.

"During a typical day here I'm usually the road convoy commander or 2IC for the advance party, which arrives first to clear the building where the Kabul Garrison Command-Advisory Team conducts their work.

"After the building has been cleared I assist with the set up of the computer servers and the command post."

When the building is safe to work in Pte Di Florio has an important role to carry out during the rest of his work day.

"I'm the battle tracker working in the command post," he said.

"I facilitate the communication between the FPE soldiers and the command post and I also track everyone's movements and location.

"The advisors come to me in order to request a FPE soldier to accompany them on their different daily tasks within the Kabul Garrison Command Headquarters area."

What PTE Di Florio enjoys about his job is working in a role above his rank level.

"I'm still a Private soldier, so having the opportunity to carry out the tasks of a Lance Corporal in the role of a 2IC is rewarding and beneficial for my career progression," he said.

"It does still involve some challenges however. For example I'm also expected to assist in managing the junior Private ranked soldiers within the team who are the same rank as me.

"I also enjoy working in the red zone of Kabul outside the green zone, as the threat level is much higher.

"Doing this I must remain more alert and focused on the job, which can be exciting, similar to my previous experiences when I was last deployed in Afghanistan during 2012."