Saturday, May 19, 2012

Peer Support Diversity Network

I spent the last week in Dar es Salaam for two reasons that are hopefully a really positive continuation of my volunteer experience in Tanzania. The first reason I had to make the 12 hour bus trip to Dar again was to check up on my eyes. My eyes remained the same as my last check up and as such, the doctors in South Africa said I can finish my medication. I am so pleased to announce that yesterday was my last day putting eye drop steroids into my delicate and over medicated eyes. I am not trying to be pessimistic, but there is a chance that my eyes will revert back to the initial symptoms by stopping the medication. However, I am being hopeful that all will turn out well. I need it to because it will really help boost my spirits as the school break/travel season is upon us! So, at this time, if you're a person who has religion in your life, I beg for your prayers - from every denomination!

The second reason I was in Dar es Salaam was because I applied and was selected to become a member of the Peer Support Diversity Network (PSDN) here in Peace Corps Tanzania. We're a group of 12 volunteers who over the course of the next year will help support volunteers in country who are experiencing small problems to very big issues. Mostly, we provide support through the phone, but also will have the great privilege to attend trainings to do sessions on various issues that Peace Corps volunteers face in country.  Additionally, we work closely with staff and the medical office. I was elected into the position of training coordinator working with staff issues. I think I'll be great with the position and look forward to working with the staff in the future.

While in Dar es Salaam, I was able to explore the city center which was a different part of Dar es Salaam that I got to know during my six weeks in Dar during medical issues. I am excited to have Jon come with me next time to show him all the great places I discovered over the course of the week there. It was also nice to meet new volunteers who will be working with me on PSDN and see old friends who I trained with back in June-August.

The new education volunteers will arrive in about 2.5 weeks and we're all so very excited to meet them! Their training class is a little bit larger than what our training class consisted of. I decided not to apply to train the English volunteers because I have already missed so much school from my medical issues. I feel sad that I will miss the great opportunity to share my knowledge and meet everyone, but I am hopeful that I can apply next year to do it anyway.

Just a small update from me and hopefully I'll get some more fun stuff to write about soon!

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