Allison Matlack

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Image:Matlack1.jpg|Allison with her co-workers from Senkoase High School
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== Description of Service ==
== Description of Service ==
   
   
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After a competitive application process stressing appropriate skills, adaptability, and cross-cultural sensitivity, Allison Scott Matlack began Peace Corps Pre-Service Training on November 18, 2005, in Maseru, Lesotho.  She completed an 8-week training program and was sworn-in as a United States Peace Corps Volunteer on January 12, 2006.   
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After a competitive application process stressing appropriate skills, adaptability, and cross-cultural sensitivity, Allison Matlack began Peace Corps Pre-Service Training on November 18, 2005, in Maseru, Lesotho.  She completed an 8-week training program and was sworn-in as a United States Peace Corps Volunteer on January 12, 2006.   
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[[Image:Matlack13.jpg|center|thumb|Education Volunteers 05-07 swearing-in]]
== PRE-SERVICE TRAINING (PST): ==
== PRE-SERVICE TRAINING (PST): ==
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* Community-Based Training:  This training consisted of approximately 4 weeks. Ms. Matlack lived with a Basotho family in a rural village with learning geared towards actual day-to-day family life, including chores, roles and responsibilities of family members, family structure, mode of dress around the house/outside the home compound, religious beliefs, and traditional food.
* Community-Based Training:  This training consisted of approximately 4 weeks. Ms. Matlack lived with a Basotho family in a rural village with learning geared towards actual day-to-day family life, including chores, roles and responsibilities of family members, family structure, mode of dress around the house/outside the home compound, religious beliefs, and traditional food.
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[[Image:Matlack14.jpg|center|thumb|Allison's community-based training host family]]
* Medical:  16 hours of instruction was given on first-aid, nutrition, diseases prevalent in southern Africa, preventative health care and HIV/AIDS.  Stress was placed on self-care.
* Medical:  16 hours of instruction was given on first-aid, nutrition, diseases prevalent in southern Africa, preventative health care and HIV/AIDS.  Stress was placed on self-care.
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* March 2007 HIV/AIDS Workshop:  This workshop took place at the Bambhata Tsita Conference Center. Many PC/Lesotho volunteers attended this workshop. It was conducted by PC staff who brought in numerous guest presenters. Among others, issues discussed were general HIV information specific to Lesotho, how HIV/AIDS affects the workplace, how to assist small businesses (BizAIDS), and how to assist Lesotho’s Student Union clubs. Volunteers across the two PC/Lesotho sectors discussed how to incorporate HIV into their work and demonstration lessons/ideas were given.
* March 2007 HIV/AIDS Workshop:  This workshop took place at the Bambhata Tsita Conference Center. Many PC/Lesotho volunteers attended this workshop. It was conducted by PC staff who brought in numerous guest presenters. Among others, issues discussed were general HIV information specific to Lesotho, how HIV/AIDS affects the workplace, how to assist small businesses (BizAIDS), and how to assist Lesotho’s Student Union clubs. Volunteers across the two PC/Lesotho sectors discussed how to incorporate HIV into their work and demonstration lessons/ideas were given.
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* September 2007 Peace Corps Volunteer Close of Service Conference:  This conference was held at the Maseru Sun Hotel in Maseru. Issues discussed were administrative and medical procedures required for COS, self-assessment of the Peace Corps experience, self-assessment of future goals, assessment of Peace Corps Lesotho, job hunting, re-entry to the USA, ways to implement Peace Corps’ third goal of educating people in America so they better  
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* September 2007 Peace Corps Volunteer Close of Service Conference:  This conference was held at the Maseru Sun Hotel in Maseru. Issues discussed were administrative and medical procedures required for COS, self-assessment of the Peace Corps experience, self-assessment of future goals, assessment of Peace Corps Lesotho, job hunting, re-entry to the USA, ways to implement Peace Corps’ third goal of educating people in America so they better understand other people and cultures, grief and loss, and a diversity session focusing on the relationships built among Education 2006-08 volunteers.
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understand other people and cultures, grief and loss, and a diversity session focusing on the relationships  
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built among Education 2006-08 volunteers.
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== VOLUNTEER SERVICE PROJECTS ==
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[[Image:Matlack10.jpg|center|thumb|Ed Volunteers 05-07 at the COS conference]]
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== VOLUNTEER SERVICE PROJECTS ==
Ms. Allison Matlack swore in as a Peace Corps volunteer on January 12, 2006, and was responsible to the Ministry of Education during her service in Lesotho.  She served as an English Language and English Literature teacher at Senkoase High School in the district of Mokhotlong.  
Ms. Allison Matlack swore in as a Peace Corps volunteer on January 12, 2006, and was responsible to the Ministry of Education during her service in Lesotho.  She served as an English Language and English Literature teacher at Senkoase High School in the district of Mokhotlong.  
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* How to write a summary of a text
* How to write a summary of a text
* Reading Comprehension skills
* Reading Comprehension skills
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[[Image:Matlack5.jpg|center|thumb|Allison's Form Ds, 2006]]
In Literature classes, the following topics were discussed:
In Literature classes, the following topics were discussed:
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*Poetic devices and figures of speech
*Poetic devices and figures of speech
*Comprehension skills including how to compose essays based from questions
*Comprehension skills including how to compose essays based from questions
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[[Image:Matlack12.jpg|center|thumb|Allison's 2006 Form As with one of their lit books]]
== SECONDARY PROJECTS ==
== SECONDARY PROJECTS ==
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* Ms. Matlack organized a Form D debate team in 2006 to compete with PCV Amy Bowes’s Form D students.  Her students from Senkoase defeated Amy’s from St. James in the first round but lost by a hair in the second.  This was a good experience for the students as they had exposure to a private school and its students; it motivated students from both schools.
* Ms. Matlack organized a Form D debate team in 2006 to compete with PCV Amy Bowes’s Form D students.  Her students from Senkoase defeated Amy’s from St. James in the first round but lost by a hair in the second.  This was a good experience for the students as they had exposure to a private school and its students; it motivated students from both schools.
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[[Image:Matlack7.jpg|center|thumb|One of Allison's Form Ds debating at St. James High, 2006]]
* Through Ms. Matlack, Senkoase High School was one of five recipients of the inaugural U.S. Embassy Loan Library Program in 2006, where five schools yearly rotate a total of about 400 books, exposing students to a wider range of reading material.  This was the beginning of Senkoase’s library; she, her students, and her co-workers built a bookshelf and maintained the books for the school.  (She also donated many of her own books.)
* Through Ms. Matlack, Senkoase High School was one of five recipients of the inaugural U.S. Embassy Loan Library Program in 2006, where five schools yearly rotate a total of about 400 books, exposing students to a wider range of reading material.  This was the beginning of Senkoase’s library; she, her students, and her co-workers built a bookshelf and maintained the books for the school.  (She also donated many of her own books.)
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[[Image:Matlack8.jpg|thumb|center|Allison's host father, Ntate Kao, accepting the Embassy's books on behalf of the school]]
* She assisted PCV Sara Anderson in compiling and designing a booklet for young girls entitled, What is Happening  to Your Body? A Guide for Young Girls in Lesotho.  This booklet provides sorely needed information about puberty and sexuality, including HIV/AIDS prevention, for adolescent females.  Ms. Matlack and Ms. Anderson received a PEPFAR grant to have the booklet translated into Sesotho and published.  The booklet has been eagerly approved by the government and 500 copies are being printed in English to distribute to Adolescent Health Corners in hospitals throughout the country; as soon as translation is complete, 500 copies will also be printed in Sesotho.
* She assisted PCV Sara Anderson in compiling and designing a booklet for young girls entitled, What is Happening  to Your Body? A Guide for Young Girls in Lesotho.  This booklet provides sorely needed information about puberty and sexuality, including HIV/AIDS prevention, for adolescent females.  Ms. Matlack and Ms. Anderson received a PEPFAR grant to have the booklet translated into Sesotho and published.  The booklet has been eagerly approved by the government and 500 copies are being printed in English to distribute to Adolescent Health Corners in hospitals throughout the country; as soon as translation is complete, 500 copies will also be printed in Sesotho.
* Ms. Matlack helped coach the boys’ and girls’ volleyball teams at Senkoase for two years.  In August 2006, she helped find sponsorship to assist the boys’ team, which was number one in the district, to reach the national tournament in Maseru, where they were not able to place.  (However, many of the boys had never seen the capital city before and the venture was well worth the trouble.)  Also, in January 2007, she met with members of the boys’ volleyball team during summer break to help prepare for the upcoming season, but illnesses and injuries prevented the team from becoming number one for a second year.  The girls’ team, despite enthusiastic practices, never managed to perform well at competitions.  
* Ms. Matlack helped coach the boys’ and girls’ volleyball teams at Senkoase for two years.  In August 2006, she helped find sponsorship to assist the boys’ team, which was number one in the district, to reach the national tournament in Maseru, where they were not able to place.  (However, many of the boys had never seen the capital city before and the venture was well worth the trouble.)  Also, in January 2007, she met with members of the boys’ volleyball team during summer break to help prepare for the upcoming season, but illnesses and injuries prevented the team from becoming number one for a second year.  The girls’ team, despite enthusiastic practices, never managed to perform well at competitions.  
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[[Image:Matlack6.jpg|center|thumb|The Senkoase Boys at the Maseru tournament, 2006]]
* Ms. Matlack took 14 Form E students to town in March of 2007 for a Career Day to talk with local men and women about different careers and how to accomplish life goals, assisted by PCV Libby Bachhuber.  The students came away with an adjusted perspective, saying they realized “hard work comes before paid work,” and they were more highly motivated to study.  Those 14 students presented findings to the rest of the class.
* Ms. Matlack took 14 Form E students to town in March of 2007 for a Career Day to talk with local men and women about different careers and how to accomplish life goals, assisted by PCV Libby Bachhuber.  The students came away with an adjusted perspective, saying they realized “hard work comes before paid work,” and they were more highly motivated to study.  Those 14 students presented findings to the rest of the class.
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[[Image:Matlack3.jpg|center|thumb|Some of the Form Es enjoying a snack on Career Day, 2007]]
* She facilitated the district’s first Speak A.L.O.U.D. (A Look at Our Understanding of Development), a nation-wide project initiated by the GAD committee.  Students from PCV schools (4 schools in Mokhotlong) participated in March of 2007, learning more about emerging gender and youth issues in Lesotho.  Guest speakers were two members of the Mokhotlong CGPU (Child/Gender Protection Unit) and one active youth member of the community.  
* She facilitated the district’s first Speak A.L.O.U.D. (A Look at Our Understanding of Development), a nation-wide project initiated by the GAD committee.  Students from PCV schools (4 schools in Mokhotlong) participated in March of 2007, learning more about emerging gender and youth issues in Lesotho.  Guest speakers were two members of the Mokhotlong CGPU (Child/Gender Protection Unit) and one active youth member of the community.  
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[[Image:Matlack9.jpg|center|thumb|Two policemen giving a session about abuse at the workshop]]
* As a result of the Speak A.L.O.U.D. workshop, the six students from Senkoase formed an English club (The Snowball Club) and, requiring only guidance and technical assistance from Ms. Matlack, published Senkoase’s first-ever school magazine in September 2007.  The proceeds of the magazine will go to fund group trips to other schools in the district for debating competitions.  The self-stated goals of the group are to improve students’ English ability and to raise awareness of the gender/youth issues discussed in the workshop.
* As a result of the Speak A.L.O.U.D. workshop, the six students from Senkoase formed an English club (The Snowball Club) and, requiring only guidance and technical assistance from Ms. Matlack, published Senkoase’s first-ever school magazine in September 2007.  The proceeds of the magazine will go to fund group trips to other schools in the district for debating competitions.  The self-stated goals of the group are to improve students’ English ability and to raise awareness of the gender/youth issues discussed in the workshop.
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[[Image:Matlack2.jpg|center|thumb|The Snowballers]]
* In early 2007, Ms. Matlack, using her knowledge of grant writing, applied for a U.S. Ambassador’s Self-HelpFund to help finish a poultry house at her school.  The grant was approved and was signed in early October.
* In early 2007, Ms. Matlack, using her knowledge of grant writing, applied for a U.S. Ambassador’s Self-HelpFund to help finish a poultry house at her school.  The grant was approved and was signed in early October.
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Pursuant to section 5 (f) of the Peace Corps act, 22 U.S.C. 2504 (f) amended, any former Volunteer employed by the United States Government following his/her Peace Corps Volunteer service is entitled to have any period of satisfactory Peace Corps Volunteer service credited for purpose of retirement, seniority, reduction in force, leave and other privileges based on length of Government service. Peace Corps service shall not be credited toward completion of the probationary or trial periods or completion of any service requirement for career appointment.  
Pursuant to section 5 (f) of the Peace Corps act, 22 U.S.C. 2504 (f) amended, any former Volunteer employed by the United States Government following his/her Peace Corps Volunteer service is entitled to have any period of satisfactory Peace Corps Volunteer service credited for purpose of retirement, seniority, reduction in force, leave and other privileges based on length of Government service. Peace Corps service shall not be credited toward completion of the probationary or trial periods or completion of any service requirement for career appointment.  
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This is to certify in accordance with Executive Order No. 11103 of April 10, 1963, that Ms. Allison Scott Matlack served satisfactorily as a Peace Corps Volunteer.  Her service ended on the below mentioned date.  She is therefore eligible to be appointed as a career-conditional employee in the competitive civil service on a non-competitive basis.   
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This is to certify in accordance with Executive Order No. 11103 of April 10, 1963, that Ms. Allison Matlack served satisfactorily as a Peace Corps Volunteer.  Her service ended on the below mentioned date.  She is therefore eligible to be appointed as a career-conditional employee in the competitive civil service on a non-competitive basis.   
This benefit under the Executive Order entitlement extends for a period of one year.  The employing agency may extend the period for up to three years for a former Volunteer who enters military service, pursues studies at a recognized institution of higher learning or engages in other activities which in the view of the appointing authority warrants extension of the period.  
This benefit under the Executive Order entitlement extends for a period of one year.  The employing agency may extend the period for up to three years for a former Volunteer who enters military service, pursues studies at a recognized institution of higher learning or engages in other activities which in the view of the appointing authority warrants extension of the period.  
   
   
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PCV: Allison Scott Matlack  
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PCV: Allison Matlack  
Reviewed by:  Ted Mooney, Country Director, Peace Corps Lesotho
Reviewed by:  Ted Mooney, Country Director, Peace Corps Lesotho
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== Lessons Learned ==
== Lessons Learned ==
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== About Allison Matlack  Today ==
== About Allison Matlack  Today ==
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I am definitely more patient. I also found my husband while serving in the Peace Corps, so that's always a plus!  (He was another member of my training group.  We had a traditional wedding ceremony while in Lesotho and are having a traditional American ceremony in October 2008.)  
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I am definitely more patient.   
I learned that underneath our multicultural clothes, we're all really the same...we all want the same things, we all are striving to reach the same goals.  We just get there in different ways.
I learned that underneath our multicultural clothes, we're all really the same...we all want the same things, we all are striving to reach the same goals.  We just get there in different ways.
I also have to say that I was pretty down on America and Americans before I left, but now I appreciate all we have and all we are given...I'm just dismayed at how we waste it all.
I also have to say that I was pretty down on America and Americans before I left, but now I appreciate all we have and all we are given...I'm just dismayed at how we waste it all.
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Currently I am a technical writer at NetApp (www.netapp.com) and am loving it!  I never wanted to be in the tech sector, but here I am...and it's a GREAT company to work for.  My fiance and I bought a house...we closed at the beginning of May 2008.  Scary!
 
== External Links ==
== External Links ==
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http://englishnerd-7.livejournal.com
 
== Publications based on Peace Corps Experience ==
== Publications based on Peace Corps Experience ==
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Not yet...working on it!  :-)
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I am having a short story of mine entitled "Mokhotlong: These Mountains are my Home" in Peace Corps at 50 Anniversary Story project, due out sometime....
== References  ==
== References  ==

Latest revision as of 04:09, 14 November 2011



Allison Scott Matlack
Flag of Lesotho.svg
Country Lesotho
Years: 2005-2007
Site(s) Ha Senkoase, Mokhotlong
Program(s) Education
Assignment(s) English Teacherwarning.png"English Teacher" is not in the list of possible values (Agroforestry, Sustainable Agricultural Science, Farm Management and Agribusiness, Animal Husbandry, Municipal Development, Small Business Development, NGO Development, Urban and Regional Planning, Primary Teacher/Training, Secondary Teacher/Training, Math/Science Teacher/Training, Special Education/Training, Deaf/Education, Vocational Teacher/Training, University Teacher/Training, English Teacher/Training (TEFL), Environmental Education, National Park Management, Dry Land Natural Resource Conservation, Fisheries Fresh, Ecotourism Development, Coastal /Fisheries Resource Management, Public Health Education, AIDS Awareness, Information Technology, Skilled Trades, Water and Sanitation Resources Engineering, Housing Construction Development, Youth, Other) for this property.
Allison Matlack started in Lesotho 2005
Elizabeth Cohen, Allison Matlack
Education in Lesotho:Education.gif
George Blakeslee, Dale Butler, Marnie Feldman, David Hanson, Dorothy Livermore, Allison Matlack, Sharon Nash
Other Volunteers who served in Lesotho
Flag of Lesotho.svg
George Blakeslee, Dale Butler, David Chard, Elizabeth Cohen, Marnie Feldman, David Hanson, Thomas LeSuer, Dorothy Livermore, Thomas Maresco, Allison Matlack, Jim Mueller, Sharon Nash, Mark Nelson, Judith Pasmore, Jeremy Rolfs … further results
Projects in Lesotho
Flag of Lesotho.svg
Early Childhood Care and Development Teachers' Library, Garden Irrigation System, Primary Classroom Libraries
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Contents

[edit] Description of Service

After a competitive application process stressing appropriate skills, adaptability, and cross-cultural sensitivity, Allison Matlack began Peace Corps Pre-Service Training on November 18, 2005, in Maseru, Lesotho. She completed an 8-week training program and was sworn-in as a United States Peace Corps Volunteer on January 12, 2006.

Education Volunteers 05-07 swearing-in

[edit] PRE-SERVICE TRAINING (PST):

Allison's community-based training host family

[edit] IN-SERVICE TRAINING (IST):

During the Peace Corps service, training is offered to help improve skills, discuss problems with other volunteers, listen to advice and enable volunteers as a group to communicate with the administration as a whole.

Ed Volunteers 05-07 at the COS conference

[edit] VOLUNTEER SERVICE PROJECTS

Ms. Allison Matlack swore in as a Peace Corps volunteer on January 12, 2006, and was responsible to the Ministry of Education during her service in Lesotho. She served as an English Language and English Literature teacher at Senkoase High School in the district of Mokhotlong.


[edit] PRIMARY ACTIVITIES

Ms. Matlack worked with about a dozen other teachers at her high school and taught English to over 300 students ranging from ages 12 to 27. She planned lessons with her colleagues, incorporating everything from grammar and literature to HIV/AIDS awareness and life skills. She was able to incorporate technology in the classroom, utilizing music and films to demonstrate lessons; she also donated books and magazines to the students. She provided her staff with resource information and also occasionally worked as an administrative assistant, copying or typing papers. She helped organize and chaperone sporting events and assisted in creating class/teacher schedules and exam timetables. In all of her classrooms, career advice, study tips, examination preparation skills and current affairs were constantly discussed.

Ms. Matlack taught English Language/Literature to Forms A and B (roughly equivalent to U.S. grades 6-8) in both 2006 and 2007. She taught English Language to Form D (roughly 11th grade) in 2006 and continued with those students into Form E (roughly 12th grade) in 2007.

In English Language classes, the following topics were discussed:

Allison's Form Ds, 2006

In Literature classes, the following topics were discussed:

Allison's 2006 Form As with one of their lit books

[edit] SECONDARY PROJECTS

One of Allison's Form Ds debating at St. James High, 2006
Allison's host father, Ntate Kao, accepting the Embassy's books on behalf of the school
The Senkoase Boys at the Maseru tournament, 2006
Some of the Form Es enjoying a snack on Career Day, 2007
Two policemen giving a session about abuse at the workshop
The Snowballers


[edit] CONCLUSION

Pursuant to section 5 (f) of the Peace Corps act, 22 U.S.C. 2504 (f) amended, any former Volunteer employed by the United States Government following his/her Peace Corps Volunteer service is entitled to have any period of satisfactory Peace Corps Volunteer service credited for purpose of retirement, seniority, reduction in force, leave and other privileges based on length of Government service. Peace Corps service shall not be credited toward completion of the probationary or trial periods or completion of any service requirement for career appointment.

This is to certify in accordance with Executive Order No. 11103 of April 10, 1963, that Ms. Allison Matlack served satisfactorily as a Peace Corps Volunteer. Her service ended on the below mentioned date. She is therefore eligible to be appointed as a career-conditional employee in the competitive civil service on a non-competitive basis.

This benefit under the Executive Order entitlement extends for a period of one year. The employing agency may extend the period for up to three years for a former Volunteer who enters military service, pursues studies at a recognized institution of higher learning or engages in other activities which in the view of the appointing authority warrants extension of the period.


PCV: Allison Matlack Reviewed by: Ted Mooney, Country Director, Peace Corps Lesotho

[edit] Lessons Learned

I LOVED Lesotho...I was told I would be receiving an invitation to Eastern Europe, but Lesotho showed up in my mailbox. I really didn't want to go to Africa...I don't do hot. But Lesotho didn't seem like "AFRICA Africa" in my mind...meaning that it wasn't the desert I imagined all of Africa to be in my ignorance. It's a beautiful mountain kingdom full of generally well-meaning people. It was my home for two years, and I miss it in a lot of ways.

And I'm proud of the work that I did. It felt like I didn't do much, but once I looked at my final DOS, I was like, "Wow. I DID something."

[edit] About Allison Matlack Today

I am definitely more patient.

I learned that underneath our multicultural clothes, we're all really the same...we all want the same things, we all are striving to reach the same goals. We just get there in different ways.

I also have to say that I was pretty down on America and Americans before I left, but now I appreciate all we have and all we are given...I'm just dismayed at how we waste it all.

[edit] External Links

[edit] Publications based on Peace Corps Experience

I am having a short story of mine entitled "Mokhotlong: These Mountains are my Home" in Peace Corps at 50 Anniversary Story project, due out sometime....

[edit] References

(for all information above)

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