Difference between pages "Living conditions and volunteer lifestyles in Ethiopia" and "Category:1968"

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{{Living_conditions_and_volunteer_lifestyles_by_country}}
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{{Categoryyears}}
 
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[[Category:1960s]]
 
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===Communications===
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Few countries in the world offer the level of mail service we
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take for granted in the United States. Airmail from the United
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States to major cities in Ethiopia typically takes 2-4 weeks
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to arrive. Volunteers have been pleasantly surprised by the
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efficiency of the Ethiopian postal service, but delayed and lost
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mail does occur. Advise your family and friends to number
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their letters and to include “Airmail” and “Par Avion” on
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their envelopes. Packages normally take 3-4 weeks to reach
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Ethiopia via airmail. Sending packages by ground mail can
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take up to a year to arrive so make sure to let your friends
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and family know this.
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Your address during training will be:<br>
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Your Name/PCT <br>
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US Peace Corps/Ethiopia<br>
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P.O. Box 7788<br>
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Addis Ababa, Ethiopia<br>
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You will purchase a personal postal office box once you move
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to your site. Mail arriving in Addis Ababa, after you have
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obtained your own postal office box, will continue to be held
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at the Peace Corps office until you pass through on official
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business or when a Peace Corps/Addis Ababa staff member
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visits you at your site.
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===Telephones===
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Almost all sites have telecom centers with international long
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distance. Peace Corps/Ethiopia provides a telecommunications
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allowance. Cellular telephones are widespread in Ethiopia,
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although coverage varies across the country. You will have the
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option of purchasing a SIM card and phone during pre-service
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training (PST); almost all current Volunteers have mobile
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phones.
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===Computer, Internet, and Email Access===
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Internet access is available at Internet cafes in most towns
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and cities, but can be slow and costly, so most Volunteers use
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Internet about once every few weeks. Designated computers
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in the resource center at the Peace Corps office have Internet
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access, and you are welcome to use these when in Addis
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Ababa. Many Volunteers bring laptops for research, digital
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photos or entertainment, but as with any valuable item, there
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is a risk of theft or damage.
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===Housing and Site Location===
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As a Volunteer, you will most likely live in a peri-urban or
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small town and have electricity and a water source at your
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house, although these services suffer frequent outages and
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shortages in Ethiopia. When it comes to your housing, you
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should not lose sight of the guiding goal of the Peace Corps.
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Maintain your focus on service to the people of Ethiopia and
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not on the level of your accommodations.
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Housing varies greatly among sites, so Peace Corps sets
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minimum housing standards:
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* There must be a private, lockable room with a private entrance, if housing is shared with other people
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* The room should have windows
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* The roof should not leak
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* There should be a cement floor and a place for a Volunteer to bathe
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* There should be a latrine that is private or semiprivate with a cemented floor
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* The Volunteer will use the same water source as his or her community
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Your site assignment is made during PST in collaboration
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with the training staff. Site placements are made using the
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following criteria (in priority order):
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* Medical and security considerations
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* Priorities of the Ethiopian government
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* Site requirements matched with technical, crosscultural, and language skills of Volunteers
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* Personal preference of the trainee (expressed during interviews with staff)
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===Living Allowance and Money Management===
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Each Volunteer receives a monthly allowance sufficient to
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cover basic costs. The allowance enables Volunteers to live
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adequately according to the Peace Corps’ philosophy of a
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modest lifestyle. It is based on the local cost of living and
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is paid in local currency. Your living allowance is intended
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to cover food, housing, clothing, transportation from home
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to worksite, utilities, household supplies, recreation and
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entertainment, incidental personal expenses, communications,
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and reading material.
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===Food and Diet===
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In most parts of Ethiopia there is a regular, although limited,
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selection of fresh fruits and vegetables. Butcher shops sell
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beef and lamb, live chickens can be purchased at market and
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in areas near lakes, and fresh fish is available. With a little
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creativity, you can enjoy a varied diet. Fruits and vegetables
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are seasonal, which means some items may not be available
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at all times. Vegetarian Volunteers will have little difficulty
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continuing their diets, as Orthodox Christians “fast” by
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eating a vegan diet on Wednesdays and Fridays throughout
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the year. Vegetarianism, however, is not common, so be
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prepared to explain your habits. Meat is eaten during special
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occasions and holidays, so it may be prudent to discuss your
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vegetarianism with host families early to avoid embarrassing
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or offending them.
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===Transportation===
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All Volunteers will be expected to travel in Ethiopia using
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local transportation (i.e., foot, bicycle, public buses, minivans
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–called “blue donkeys due to the way they drive in
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tight traffic). Volunteers may not own or operate motorized
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vehicles in Ethiopia. Peace Corps will provide a stipend for
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Volunteers wishing to purchase a bike (with helmet) at site. If
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you purchase a bike, you are required to always wear a helmet
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while riding.
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===Geography and Climate===
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Most of Ethiopia is expected to enjoy a tropical climate due to
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its proximity to the equator, but since most of the country’s
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land mass is above 4,920 feet (1,500 meters), that is not
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the case. Ethiopia experiences extremely varied climatic
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conditions from cool to very cold in the highlands which most
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of the population inhabits, to one of the hottest places on
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Earth at the Danakil Depression.
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===Social Activities===
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The most common form of entertainment is socializing among
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friends and neighbors. Some Volunteers visit other Volunteers
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on weekends and holidays. The Peace Corps encourages
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Volunteers to remain at their sites as much as possible to
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develop relationships with community members, but it also
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recognizes that they need to make occasional trips to regional
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centers and to visit friends.
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You will find it easy to make friends in your community and
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to participate in weddings, funerals, birthday celebrations,
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and other social events. It is impossible to overemphasize the
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rewards of establishing rapport with supervisors, co-workers,
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and other community members. A sincere effort to learn the
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local language will greatly facilitate these interactions.
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chelsea rae harris
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===Professionalism, Dress, and Behavior===
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Ethiopians regard dress and appearance as an outward sign
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of the respect one holds for another individual. Neatness in
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appearance is more important than being “stylish.” Volunteers
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should always wear clean and neat clothes. Buttoned shirts for
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men and blouses and skirts or dresses (to or below the knee)
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for women are appropriate during business hours. T-shirts are
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appropriate only for casual, non-business activities. Tank tops,
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see-through blouses, or low-cut blouses are not appropriate;
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exposing one’s shoulders is unacceptable. Blue jeans should
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not be worn during business hours unless the conditions of
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the job assignment or training activity allow it, and never
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when visiting government offices. Shorts may be worn only at
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home, when exercising (if appropriate), or when doing work.
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Aside from dress, there are other standards of appearance
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that must be respected. Women should wear appropriate
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undergarment, including bras and slips. Your hair should be
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clean and combed. For men, beards should be neatly trimmed.
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The matter of sexual behavior is, of course, a highly personal
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one. However, because of other social implications of such
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behavior, it is important that Peace Corps standards be clear.
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Sexual mores in Ethiopia are very conservative and strict,
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and you are expected to respect them. Public displays of
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affection between members of the opposite sex, such as
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kissing, hand holding, or hugging are not generally socially
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acceptable, though hand holding among men is very common.
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Homosexuality is illegal in Ethiopia and punishable by
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imprisonment or deportation. Further information will be
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provided during your PST on appropriate and inappropriate
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sexual behavior.
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These restrictions have been formalized in response to
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specific instances of inappropriate dress and behavior by
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Volunteers. In general, the above guidance is meant to convey
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to Volunteers that adherence to professional standards is
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appropriate at all times and in all places. When in doubt, look
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to your Ethiopian counterparts for guidance. If the country
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director determines that willful disregard of cultural standards
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is jeopardizing your credibility or that of the program, you
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may be administratively separated from the Peace Corps.
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===Personal Safety===
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More detailed information about the Peace Corps’ approach
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to safety is contained in the Health Care and Safety chapter,
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but it is an important issue and cannot be overemphasized. As
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stated in the Volunteer Handbook, becoming a Peace Corps
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Volunteer entails certain safety risks. Living and traveling
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in an unfamiliar environment (oftentimes alone), having a
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limited understanding of local language and culture, and being
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perceived as well-off are some of the factors that can put a
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Volunteer at risk. Many Volunteers experience varying degrees
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of unwanted attention and harassment. Petty thefts and
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burglaries are not uncommon, and incidents of physical and
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sexual assault do occur, although most Ethiopia Volunteers
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complete their two years of service without personal security
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incidents. The Peace Corps has established procedures and
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policies designed to help you reduce your risks and enhance
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your safety and security. These procedures and policies, in
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addition to safety training, will be provided once you arrive
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in Ethiopia. At the same time, you are expected to take
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responsibility for your safety and well-being.
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Each staff member at the Peace Corps is committed
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to providing Volunteers with the support they need to
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successfully meet the challenges they will face to have a safe,
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healthy, and productive service. We encourage Volunteers and
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families to look at our safety and security information on the
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Peace Corps website at www.peacecorps.gov/safety.
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Information on these pages gives messages on Volunteer
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health and Volunteer safety. A video message from the
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Director is on this page, as well as a section titled “Safety and
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Security in Depth.” This page lists topics ranging from the
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risks of serving as a Volunteer to posts’ safety support systems
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to emergency planning and communications.
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===Rewards and Frustrations===
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Before accepting this assignment, you should give ample
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thought to some of the potential obstacles you will face. Until
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your adjustment to Ethiopia is complete, you will undoubtedly
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feel out of place speaking a new language and trying to
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practice customs that may seem strange to you. No matter
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what your ethnic, religious, or racial background is, you may
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stick out as someone from outside the Ethiopian culture.
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However, many situations can be overcome with a sense of
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humor and an open mind.
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Your work situation may also present many difficulties and
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frustrations. Most of your work will be to educate, motivate,
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and organize community groups, an often slow task. You will
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find yourself in situations that require an ability to motivate
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yourself and your colleagues and take action with little
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guidance from your colleagues and counterparts. You must
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possess the self-confidence, patience, and vision to continue
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working toward long-term goals without seeing immediate
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results or feedback. Co-workers, severely underpaid and
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burdened with extended family commitments, will have a
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much different outlook on life than your own, and rainy and
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agricultural seasons will delay many project activities. As each
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Volunteer’s job description will be uniquely dependent upon
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the expressed needs of the community and the skills that you
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bring, you will be constantly defining and redefining your role
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as you attempt to meet the needs of your community. This
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is both a gift and a challenge. A gift in that you are free to
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work in areas where you are needed most, and a challenge in
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that you must invent and reinvent yourself in an oftentimes
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unstructured work environment. Defining your role and
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finding your “niche” within your community will be one of
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your greatest challenges, but one that can be achieved with
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time, personal drive, resourcefulness, and a flexible and
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patient mind.
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Peace Corps service is not for everyone. More than a job, it
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requires greater dedication and commitment to serve than
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do most other work environments. It is for confident, selfstarting,
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and concerned individuals who are interested in
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assisting in other countries and increasing understanding
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across cultures. If you have the personal qualities needed to
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accept the challenges described above and can demonstrate
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them for a two-year service commitment in Ethiopia, you will
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have a rewarding, enriching, and lasting experience, while
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at the same time making a much-needed contribution to the
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development of Ethiopia.
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Even with the many economic, social, political, and
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environmental challenges facing Ethiopia today, there is an
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atmosphere of excitement and hope. The changes occurring
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are some of the most important in the country’s modern
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history. To join the people of Ethiopia in this effort, and to
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be part of this historical and defining moment, will be both
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fascinating and satisfying to Volunteers willing to work hard,
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be tolerant, and give generously of their time.
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The HIV epidemic strikes across all social strata in Ethiopia.
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You will probably be working regularly with people living with
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HIV/AIDS. Volunteers need to prepare themselves to embrace
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these relationships in a sensitive and positive manner. It is
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important to be aware of the high emotional toll this disease
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can have on Volunteers and take care to maintain your own
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emotional strength so you can continue to serve
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your community.
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See also: [[Ethiopia]]
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Latest revision as of 09:18, 21 May 2014


  • The following is a categorized listing of those articles that relate to 1968 in 1968.
  • RPCVs that began service in 1968 are listed.
  • RPCVs, projects, sites and other activities that occurred in 1968 are listed. If you're an RPCV you can create a page on yourself.

{{#if:|*For a more complete listing of all that occurred in 1968 see the [[{{{decade}}}]].|}}