Difference between pages "Diversity and cross-cultural issues in Benin" and "South Africa"

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In fulfilling the Peace Corps mandate to share the face of America with our host countries, we are making special efforts to ensure that our cultural and ethnic diversity is reflected in the Volunteer corps. Differences in race, ethnic background, age, religion, and sexual orientation are expected and welcomed among our Volunteers. Part of the Peace Corps’ mission is to help dispel any notion that Americans are all of one origin or race, and to establish that each of us is as thoroughly American as the other, despite our many differences.
 
  
Our diversity helps us accomplish that goal. In other ways, however, our diversity poses challenges. In Benin, as in other Peace Corps host countries, Volunteer behavior, lifestyles, background, and beliefs will be judged in a cultural context that may be very different from our own. Certain personal perspectives or characteristics considered familiar and commonly accepted in the United States may be quite uncommon, unacceptable, or even repressed in certain host countries.  
+
Since the end of apartheid in 1994, South Africa has made progress in the educational,
 +
health, and governmental systems. However, gaps in the opportunities remain for the
 +
historically disadvantaged population. The official unemployment rate is 31%. Sources
 +
estimate that over 50% of the population lives below the poverty line. Poverty and the lack of education are particularly high in the rural areas of South Africa where the
 +
government of South Africa is working to transform the educational system.
  
Outside of the capital, residents of rural communities have had relatively little direct exposure to other cultures, races, religions, and lifestyles. What is advertised as “typical” cultural behavior or norms may also be a narrow and selective interpretation, such as the perception in some countries that all Americans are rich and have blond hair and blue eyes.  Foreigners justly know the people of Benin for their generous hospitality; however, members of the community in which you will live may display a range of reactions to differences that you present. We ask you to be supportive of one another.  
+
The first group of Peace Corps Volunteers arrived in South Africa in February 1997.
 +
Currently, PC/South Africa has two projects: education and NGO capacity building.
  
In order to ease the transition and adapt to the ways of your host country, you may need to make some temporary yet fundamental compromises with who you are as an American and as an individual. For example, women trainees and Volunteers will likely not be able to exercise the independence available to them in the United States; political discussions will need to be handled with great care; and some of your personal beliefs may best remain undisclosed. You will need to develop techniques and personal strategies for coping with these and other limits. Staff and peer support network Volunteers will lead diversity and sensitivity discussions during your pre-service training and will be on-call to provide support, but the challenge ultimately will be your own.  
+
South African Peace Corps Volunteers maintain an in-country wiki found [http://pc-sa.wikispaces.com/ Here]
  
===What Might A Volunteer Face?===
+
==Peace Corps History==
  
====Possible Issues for Female Volunteers====
+
''Main article: [[History of the Peace Corps in South Africa]]''
  
Benin has a traditional, patriarchal culture. However, at the community level, Beninese are learning to accept women who take professional roles or who live independently of their families. Current Volunteers advise that service is more difficult for female Volunteers due to verbal sexual harassment and the misconceptions that exist concerning male-female relationships. It is important to note that the same challenges exist for Beninese women, particularly in the schools. Peace Corps/Benin has a zero-tolerance policy for sexual harassment on the job. Should you encounter harassment on the job, you should inform the country director immediately.  
+
The Peace Corps arrived in South Africa at a historic and critical juncture in the country’s history. At a White House ceremony in October 1994, former Presidents Bill Clinton and Nelson Mandela met to seal a bond of friendship and a promise to work together to transform South Africa from a divided nation to one united by its commitment to build a democratic, nonracially based society. The Peace Corps was a small but important part of that agreement. The first group of 35 Volunteers arrived in January 1997 to work in the education sector. Since that time, more than 200 Volunteers have served or are serving in South Africa. In 2001, Peace Corps/South Africa responded to the government’s request to join in a partnership against HIV/AIDS. In addition to serving as resources for primary school educators, Volunteers now assist local nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) in building their capacity to meet the demands of the HIV/AIDS pandemic. Currently, about 85 Volunteers work in education and with NGOs.
  
Female Volunteers may find that living alone raises questions about their marital status. Some find that saying that they are married helps limit sexual harassment. Others have felt that they have to work harder than male Volunteers to gain the respect of host country colleagues in the workplace.
 
  
Females may encounter unwanted attention in public. While we cannot control this, we can help you develop strategies for coping. Do not hesitate to insist on learning strategies during your pre-service training. Some female Volunteers have found they need to keep a low social profile and practice discretion in public (e.g., not smoking in public or drinking in bars) to avoid developing an undesirable reputation in their community.
+
==Living Conditions and Volunteer Lifestyle==
  
====Possible Issues for Volunteers of Color====
+
''Main article: [[Living conditions and volunteer lifestyles in South Africa]]''
  
In rural sites or villages, Volunteers are usually the only foreign resident and will receive extra attention regardless of their racial or ethnic background. Volunteers of color will encounter a wide range of cross-cultural issues in Benin.  
+
All Volunteers live with a host family at a site located anywhere from one hour to nine hours from Pretoria, the capital. Proximity to another Volunteer varies from site to site.
  
Most Beninese are used to seeing African Americans.  Furthermore, because of the country’s historical role and involvement in slavery, some Beninese feel some affinity with African Americans and will often joke with them or believe that they come from Benin or another African country. Beninese will sometimes assume that you speak a local language because of your skin color. Depending on your personality, you may interpret this assumption as welcome or you may find it distressing. Remember, you will not be able to readily identify the ethnicity of a Beninese by his or her language. Similarly, you should not expect that a Beninese will know that you are American, even though you are a Peace Corps Volunteer.  
+
Your host agency will provide safe and adequate housing—in accordance with the Peace Corps’ site selection criteria—that is likely to consist of a private room inside a family’s house or a room in an outside building within a family compound. Housing varies from mud houses with either thatch or tin roofs to brick homes with tin roofs. You need to be very flexible in your housing expectations because there is no guarantee that you will have running water or electricity. If you do not, you will collect your water from a well or borehole and spend your evenings reading by candlelight or lantern.
  
Like African Americans, Asian-American Volunteers have expressed frustration and disappointment at being asked their nationality. When they answer “Asian-American,” some Beninese react with surprise or disbelief, saying they didn't know there were people of Asian descent in America. In Benin, there are Chinese, Indian, and Lebanese communities and Volunteers of Asian heritage may be confused with merchant classes in the eyes of some Beninese, especially in urban areas. Some Asian-American Volunteers have found that some Beninese will call them “Chinese” no matter their origins. They may be teased by children and asked if they know kung fu or karate.  
+
The sponsoring agency or host family will provide you with basic items (i.e., a bed, mattress, desk/table, straight chair, and cupboard for hanging clothing or storage). Each Volunteer will receive an allowance in local currency to purchase needed settling-in items, as well as a water filter provided by the Peace Corps.  
  
====Possible Issues for Senior Volunteers====
 
  
Respect comes with age in Benin. Younger Volunteers might have to work harder than older Volunteers to be accepted as professionals by their Beninese colleagues. Older Volunteers might find that almost too much is expected of them because of their age.
+
==Training==
  
Within the Peace Corps community, older Volunteers may sometimes feel isolated, because most Volunteers in Benin are in their 20s. Older Volunteers may have difficulty finding emotional support among their fellow Volunteers. They may find that younger Volunteers expect older ones to “mother” them. (Some seniors find this a very enjoyable part of their experience, but others choose not to fill this role.)
+
''Main article: [[Training in South Africa]]''
 +
 +
Training is an essential and ongoing part of your Peace Corps service. Pre-service training will give you enough skills and information to begin your adjustment to and service in South Africa. It is the first “reality test” of your life as a Volunteer, which will help you make an informed commitment when you swear in as a Peace Corps Volunteer.
  
Older Volunteers who are used to living independent lives may at first feel frustrated by the fact that younger Beninese want to do things for them. However, many seniors come to accept this as a sign of respect and enjoy the role of providing wisdom rather than physical assistance.  
+
The 8- to 10-week pre-service training in South Africa is community based, meaning that the bulk of the training takes place in a community similar to where you will be placed as a Volunteer. The training staff will design a learning environment with experiences and meetings designed to allow you to develop the knowledge and skills needed for your work as a Volunteer. There will be sessions on language, community integration, cross-cultural communication, development issues, health and personal safety, and technical skills appropriate to your assignment. Throughout your training, you will live with a South African family and work in villages and schools.
  
====Possible Issues for Gay, Lesbian, or Bisexual Volunteers====
+
At the onset of training, the training staff will outline the training goals and assessment criteria that each trainee has to reach before becoming a Volunteer. Evaluation of your performance during training will be based on a continual dialogue between you and the training staff. The training manager, along with other training staff, will work with you to achieve the training goals by providing you feedback throughout trainin
  
Benin’s sexual mores are conservative and you are expected to respect them. Many people in Benin still believe that gay and lesbian relationships are wrong, and that such relationships do not exist in their country. Although you may see signs of physical intimacy among men and women in Benin, this is not necessarily a sign of a gay or lesbian relationship. Engaging in homosexual sex is against the law in Benin. Some gay and lesbian Volunteers in Benin report that they are not able to be open about their sexual orientation. In the past, gay and lesbian Volunteers have formed their own support group. You may find more helpful information at http://www.lgbrpcv.org, a website affiliated with the National Peace Corps Association that provides specific information on serving in the Peace Corps as a gay or lesbian Volunteer.
 
  
'''See also:''' Articles about Benin on the National Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual Peace Corps Alumni Association website at http://www.lgbrpcv.org/articles.htm
+
==Health Care and Safety==
  
====Possible Religious Issues for Volunteers====
+
''Main article: [[Health care and safety in South Africa]]''
  
Volunteers are frequently asked about their religious affiliation and may be invited to attend a community church. In some circles, there will be a tendency to think that all Americans are Protestants. Volunteers not in the practice of attending church may be challenged to explain their reluctance, but it is possible to politely decline if the church or religious practice is not your choice. Most Volunteers facing these issues have found effective ways to cope with these additional challenges and have come to feel quite at home in Benin.  
+
The Peace Corps’ highest priority is maintaining the good health and safety of every Volunteer. Peace Corps medical programs emphasize the preventive, rather than the curative, approach to disease. The Peace Corps in South Africa maintains a clinic with a full-time medical officer, who takes care of Volunteers’ primary healthcare needs. Additional medical services, such as testing and basic treatment, are also available in South Africa at local, American-standard hospitals. If you become seriously ill, you will be transported either to an American-standard medical facility in the region or to the United States.
  
====Possible Issues for Volunteers with Disabilities====
 
  
As part of the clearance process, the Peace Corps Office of Medical Services determines if disabled candidates can be selected if they are physically and emotionally capable of performing a full tour of Volunteer service in Benin without harm to themselves or interruption of their service. The Peace Corps/Benin staff will work with disabled Volunteers to make reasonable accommodations for training, housing, job sites and other aspects of their service.
 
  
That being said, a disabled Volunteer in Benin will face a special set of challenges. In Benin, as in other parts of the world, some people may hold prejudicial attitudes toward individuals with disabilities. Benin has virtually no physical infrastructure to accommodate people with disabilities.
+
==Diversity and Cross-Cultural Issues==
  
Many of the beggars in Benin are disabled people who have no skills. Some organizations provide training for the disabled, but it is usually limited to arts and crafts. Disabled Volunteers would thus face challenges in overcoming negative stereotypes and difficult physical conditions. However, they also have an opportunity to be inspirational role models for disabled Beninese and to encourage changes in attitude and infrastructure in their communities.
+
''Main article: [[Diversity and cross-cultural issues in South Africa]]''
  
 +
In South Africa, as in other Peace Corps host countries, Volunteers’ behavior, lifestyles, background, and beliefs will be judged in a cultural context very different from our own. Certain personal perspectives or characteristics commonly accepted in the United States may be quite uncommon, unacceptable, or even repressed.
  
[[Category:Benin]]
+
Outside of South Africa’s capital, residents of rural communities have had relatively little direct exposure to other cultures, races, religions, and lifestyles. What is viewed as “typical” cultural behavior or norms may be a narrow and selective interpretation, such as the perception in some countries that all Americans are rich and have blond hair and blue eyes. The people of South Africa are justly known for their generous hospitality to foreigners; however, members of the community in which you will live may display a range of reactions to differences that you present.
 +
 
 +
* Possible Issues for Female Volunteers
 +
* Possible Issues for Volunteers of Color
 +
* Possible Issues for Senior Volunteers
 +
 
 +
* Possible Issues for Gay, Lesbian, or Bisexual Volunteers
 +
 
 +
While Gays and Lesbians do exist and are out in the more urban and metropolitan areas of South Africa, there is still a very high level of intolerance towards same-sex relationships among many South Africans. You may have to remain closeted or be very discreet about your sexual preference and lifestyle, especially at your site and in your village. Many black South Africans see homosexuality as evil and an abomination and are very vocal about this. Exercise restraint and caution should you choose to be open as a Gay or Lesbian PCV.
 +
 
 +
* Possible Religious Issues for Volunteers
 +
 
 +
South Africans come from a wide variety of faiths, with the largest religious group being Christians (70%) followed by Atheists, Hindus, Jews, and traditional beliefs. It is quite common for schools and other organizations (NGOs, clinics, government bodies) to have public Christian prayer. Reading from the Bible during gatherings is not unheard of. Volunteers who are not religious should note this, but be up front with your co-workers and host family if you are uncomfortable. You will usually not be pressured to go if you explain respectfully about your religious preferences.
 +
 
 +
* Possible Issues for Volunteers With Disabilities
 +
 
 +
==Frequently Asked Questions==
 +
 
 +
{{Volunteersurvey2008
 +
|H1r=  35
 +
|H1s=  72.5
 +
|H2r=  33
 +
|H2s=  84.3
 +
|H3r=  51
 +
|H3s=  81
 +
|H4r=  19
 +
|H4s=  108
 +
|H5r=  51
 +
|H5s=  46.8
 +
|H6r=  57
 +
|H6s=  70.6
 +
}}
 +
 
 +
''Main article: [[FAQs about Peace Corps in South Africa]]''
 +
 
 +
* How much luggage am I allowed to bring to South Africa?
 +
* What is the electric current in South Africa?
 +
* How much money should I bring?
 +
* When can I take vacation and have people visit me?
 +
* Will my belongings be covered by insurance?
 +
* Do I need an international driver’s license?
 +
* What should I bring as gifts for South African friends and my host family?
 +
* Where will my site assignment be when I finish training and how isolated will I be?
 +
* How can my family contact me in an emergency?
 +
* Can I call home from South Africa?
 +
* Should I bring a cellular phone with me?
 +
* Will there be e-mail and Internet access? Should I bring my computer?
 +
 
 +
South African Peace Corps Volunteers maintain an in-country wiki found [http://pc-sa.wikispaces.com/ Here]
 +
 
 +
==Packing List==
 +
 
 +
''Main article: [[Packing list for South Africa]]''
 +
 +
This list has been compiled by Volunteers serving in South Africa and is based on their experience. Use it as an informal guide in making your own list, bearing in mind that experience is individual. There is no perfect list! You obviously cannot bring everything we mention, so consider those items that make the most sense to you personally and professionally. You can always have things sent to you later. As you decide what to bring, keep in mind that you have an 80pound weight restriction on baggage. And remember, you can get almost everything you need in South Africa.
 +
 
 +
Luggage should be durable, lightweight, lockable, and easy to carry. Wheels are a plus, especially those suitable for wheeling luggage over nonpaved surfaces. Backpacks without frames are very practical. A midsize backpack for weekend and weeklong trips is essential. Also, a regular-size book bag is a good thing to bring. When choosing luggage, remember that you will be hauling it in and out of taxis and buses, and often lugging it around on foot.
 +
 
 +
* General Clothing
 +
* For Men
 +
* For Women
 +
* Shoes
 +
* Personal Hygiene and Toiletry Items
 +
* Miscellaneous
 +
 
 +
 
 +
==Peace Corps News==
 +
 
 +
Current events relating to Peace Corps are also available by [[News | country of service]] or [[News by state|your home state]]
 +
 
 +
''The following is automatic RSS feed of Peace Corps news for this country.''<br><rss title=on desc=off>http://news.google.com/news?hl=en&ned=us&scoring=n&q=%22peace+corps%22+%22south+africa%22&output=rss|charset=UTF-8|short|date=M d</rss>
 +
 
 +
<br>'''[http://peacecorpsjournals.com PEACE CORPS JOURNALS]'''<br>''( As of {{CURRENTDAYNAME}} {{CURRENTMONTHNAME}} {{CURRENTDAY}}, {{CURRENTYEAR}} )''<rss title=off desc=off>http://peacecorpsjournals.com/rss/sf/blog/50.xml|charset=UTF-8|short|max=10</rss>
 +
 
 +
==Country Fund==
 +
 
 +
Contributions to the [https://www.peacecorps.gov/index.cfm?shell=resources.donors.contribute.projDetail&projdesc=674-CFD South Africa Country Fund] will support Volunteer and community projects that will take place in South Africa. These projects include water and sanitation, agricultural development, and youth programs.
 +
 
 +
==See Also==
 +
* [[Inspector General Reports]]
 +
* [[Volunteers who served in South Africa]]
 +
* [[South_Africa sites|Sites where volunteers have served in South Africa]]
 +
* [[Pre-Departure Checklist]]
 +
* [[List of resources for South Africa]]
 +
* [http://pc-sa.wikispaces.com/ PCSA Wiki]
 +
 
 +
[[Category:South Africa]] [[Category:Africa]]
 +
[[Category:Country]]

Latest revision as of 11:44, 22 May 2014

Since the end of apartheid in 1994, South Africa has made progress in the educational, health, and governmental systems. However, gaps in the opportunities remain for the historically disadvantaged population. The official unemployment rate is 31%. Sources estimate that over 50% of the population lives below the poverty line. Poverty and the lack of education are particularly high in the rural areas of South Africa where the government of South Africa is working to transform the educational system.

The first group of Peace Corps Volunteers arrived in South Africa in February 1997. Currently, PC/South Africa has two projects: education and NGO capacity building.

South African Peace Corps Volunteers maintain an in-country wiki found Here

Peace Corps History[edit]

Main article: History of the Peace Corps in South Africa

The Peace Corps arrived in South Africa at a historic and critical juncture in the country’s history. At a White House ceremony in October 1994, former Presidents Bill Clinton and Nelson Mandela met to seal a bond of friendship and a promise to work together to transform South Africa from a divided nation to one united by its commitment to build a democratic, nonracially based society. The Peace Corps was a small but important part of that agreement. The first group of 35 Volunteers arrived in January 1997 to work in the education sector. Since that time, more than 200 Volunteers have served or are serving in South Africa. In 2001, Peace Corps/South Africa responded to the government’s request to join in a partnership against HIV/AIDS. In addition to serving as resources for primary school educators, Volunteers now assist local nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) in building their capacity to meet the demands of the HIV/AIDS pandemic. Currently, about 85 Volunteers work in education and with NGOs.


Living Conditions and Volunteer Lifestyle[edit]

Main article: Living conditions and volunteer lifestyles in South Africa

All Volunteers live with a host family at a site located anywhere from one hour to nine hours from Pretoria, the capital. Proximity to another Volunteer varies from site to site.

Your host agency will provide safe and adequate housing—in accordance with the Peace Corps’ site selection criteria—that is likely to consist of a private room inside a family’s house or a room in an outside building within a family compound. Housing varies from mud houses with either thatch or tin roofs to brick homes with tin roofs. You need to be very flexible in your housing expectations because there is no guarantee that you will have running water or electricity. If you do not, you will collect your water from a well or borehole and spend your evenings reading by candlelight or lantern.

The sponsoring agency or host family will provide you with basic items (i.e., a bed, mattress, desk/table, straight chair, and cupboard for hanging clothing or storage). Each Volunteer will receive an allowance in local currency to purchase needed settling-in items, as well as a water filter provided by the Peace Corps.


Training[edit]

Main article: Training in South Africa

Training is an essential and ongoing part of your Peace Corps service. Pre-service training will give you enough skills and information to begin your adjustment to and service in South Africa. It is the first “reality test” of your life as a Volunteer, which will help you make an informed commitment when you swear in as a Peace Corps Volunteer.

The 8- to 10-week pre-service training in South Africa is community based, meaning that the bulk of the training takes place in a community similar to where you will be placed as a Volunteer. The training staff will design a learning environment with experiences and meetings designed to allow you to develop the knowledge and skills needed for your work as a Volunteer. There will be sessions on language, community integration, cross-cultural communication, development issues, health and personal safety, and technical skills appropriate to your assignment. Throughout your training, you will live with a South African family and work in villages and schools.

At the onset of training, the training staff will outline the training goals and assessment criteria that each trainee has to reach before becoming a Volunteer. Evaluation of your performance during training will be based on a continual dialogue between you and the training staff. The training manager, along with other training staff, will work with you to achieve the training goals by providing you feedback throughout trainin


Health Care and Safety[edit]

Main article: Health care and safety in South Africa

The Peace Corps’ highest priority is maintaining the good health and safety of every Volunteer. Peace Corps medical programs emphasize the preventive, rather than the curative, approach to disease. The Peace Corps in South Africa maintains a clinic with a full-time medical officer, who takes care of Volunteers’ primary healthcare needs. Additional medical services, such as testing and basic treatment, are also available in South Africa at local, American-standard hospitals. If you become seriously ill, you will be transported either to an American-standard medical facility in the region or to the United States.


Diversity and Cross-Cultural Issues[edit]

Main article: Diversity and cross-cultural issues in South Africa

In South Africa, as in other Peace Corps host countries, Volunteers’ behavior, lifestyles, background, and beliefs will be judged in a cultural context very different from our own. Certain personal perspectives or characteristics commonly accepted in the United States may be quite uncommon, unacceptable, or even repressed.

Outside of South Africa’s capital, residents of rural communities have had relatively little direct exposure to other cultures, races, religions, and lifestyles. What is viewed as “typical” cultural behavior or norms may be a narrow and selective interpretation, such as the perception in some countries that all Americans are rich and have blond hair and blue eyes. The people of South Africa are justly known for their generous hospitality to foreigners; however, members of the community in which you will live may display a range of reactions to differences that you present.

  • Possible Issues for Female Volunteers
  • Possible Issues for Volunteers of Color
  • Possible Issues for Senior Volunteers
  • Possible Issues for Gay, Lesbian, or Bisexual Volunteers

While Gays and Lesbians do exist and are out in the more urban and metropolitan areas of South Africa, there is still a very high level of intolerance towards same-sex relationships among many South Africans. You may have to remain closeted or be very discreet about your sexual preference and lifestyle, especially at your site and in your village. Many black South Africans see homosexuality as evil and an abomination and are very vocal about this. Exercise restraint and caution should you choose to be open as a Gay or Lesbian PCV.

  • Possible Religious Issues for Volunteers

South Africans come from a wide variety of faiths, with the largest religious group being Christians (70%) followed by Atheists, Hindus, Jews, and traditional beliefs. It is quite common for schools and other organizations (NGOs, clinics, government bodies) to have public Christian prayer. Reading from the Bible during gatherings is not unheard of. Volunteers who are not religious should note this, but be up front with your co-workers and host family if you are uncomfortable. You will usually not be pressured to go if you explain respectfully about your religious preferences.

  • Possible Issues for Volunteers With Disabilities

Frequently Asked Questions[edit]

South Africa
2008 Volunteer Survey Results

How personally rewarding is your overall Peace Corps service?|}} Rank:
2008 H1r::35|}}
Score:
2008 H1s::72.5|}}
Today would you make the same decision to join the Peace Corps?|}} Rank:
2008 H2r::33|}}
Score:
2008 H2s::84.3|}}
Would you recommend Peace Corps service to others you think are qualified?|}} Rank:
2008 H3r::51|}}
Score:
2008 H3s::81|}}
Do you intend to complete your Peace Corps service?|}} Rank:
2008 H4r::19|}}
Score:
2008 H4s::108|}}
How well do your Peace Corps experiences match the expectations you had before you became a Volunteer?|}} Rank:
2008 H5r::51|}}
Score:
2008 H5s::46.8|}}
Would your host country benefit the most if the Peace Corps program were---?|}} Rank:
2008 H6r::57|}}
Score:
2008 H6s::70.6|}}
2008BVS::South Africa


Main article: FAQs about Peace Corps in South Africa

  • How much luggage am I allowed to bring to South Africa?
  • What is the electric current in South Africa?
  • How much money should I bring?
  • When can I take vacation and have people visit me?
  • Will my belongings be covered by insurance?
  • Do I need an international driver’s license?
  • What should I bring as gifts for South African friends and my host family?
  • Where will my site assignment be when I finish training and how isolated will I be?
  • How can my family contact me in an emergency?
  • Can I call home from South Africa?
  • Should I bring a cellular phone with me?
  • Will there be e-mail and Internet access? Should I bring my computer?

South African Peace Corps Volunteers maintain an in-country wiki found Here

Packing List[edit]

Main article: Packing list for South Africa

This list has been compiled by Volunteers serving in South Africa and is based on their experience. Use it as an informal guide in making your own list, bearing in mind that experience is individual. There is no perfect list! You obviously cannot bring everything we mention, so consider those items that make the most sense to you personally and professionally. You can always have things sent to you later. As you decide what to bring, keep in mind that you have an 80pound weight restriction on baggage. And remember, you can get almost everything you need in South Africa.

Luggage should be durable, lightweight, lockable, and easy to carry. Wheels are a plus, especially those suitable for wheeling luggage over nonpaved surfaces. Backpacks without frames are very practical. A midsize backpack for weekend and weeklong trips is essential. Also, a regular-size book bag is a good thing to bring. When choosing luggage, remember that you will be hauling it in and out of taxis and buses, and often lugging it around on foot.

  • General Clothing
  • For Men
  • For Women
  • Shoes
  • Personal Hygiene and Toiletry Items
  • Miscellaneous


Peace Corps News[edit]

Current events relating to Peace Corps are also available by country of service or your home state

The following is automatic RSS feed of Peace Corps news for this country.
<rss title=on desc=off>http://news.google.com/news?hl=en&ned=us&scoring=n&q=%22peace+corps%22+%22south+africa%22&output=rss%7Ccharset=UTF-8%7Cshort%7Cdate=M d</rss>


PEACE CORPS JOURNALS
( As of Tuesday September 16, 2014 )<rss title=off desc=off>http://peacecorpsjournals.com/rss/sf/blog/50.xml%7Ccharset=UTF-8%7Cshort%7Cmax=10</rss>

Country Fund[edit]

Contributions to the South Africa Country Fund will support Volunteer and community projects that will take place in South Africa. These projects include water and sanitation, agricultural development, and youth programs.

See Also[edit]