My interest in the Peace Corps started in the early 1970's when my Godmother and her family moved to Kenya to begin their Peace Corps service. Letters and stories traveled across the Atlantic and piqued an early interest in the world around me. I've always enjoyed learning about new cultures and, throughout my life, have jumped at any opportunity to travel the globe. Now in mid-life, I find myself at a crossroads, having left one career and not yet ready to start the next. This seems like the perfect time to venture into the unknown, leave my comfort zone, and explore my innate capabilities.
I leave August 9th (2010) for a one day training event in DC and then am off to Senegal on the 10th. For the first 10 weeks or so, I'll be living with a host family in the city of Thiès (pronounced Chess) and participating in training classes 6 days a week. Training will consist language courses (both French and Wolof), health and safety classes, and an overview of applicable business skills. After that, an evaluation will take place and with any luck I'll be inducted as a Peace Corps Volunteer and assigned a post in one of Senegal's 11 regions. My assignment will be in Small Enterprise Development or Eco-Tourism, both of which sound really exciting and challenging.
For those who care to track my adventure and read about my experiences, check back often and/or sign up (below) to receive my posts by email.
Embarking on this journey would not be possible without the support of my extended family and the encouragement of my friends. I am especially grateful to my parents who worked tirelessly the month before my departure to run needed errands and purchase miscellaneous necessities, to my dear friend Scot and his family who will be providing a caring home for my dogs while I'm gone, and to Brett, my partner and best friend, who has selflessly allowed me the time and space to venture forth to explore this unknown path. You all mean the world to me.