Difference between pages "Diversity and Cross-Cultural Issues in Bangladesh" and "Training in Costa Rica"

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Pre-service training, which follows a community-based training model, lasts for 11 weeks. Training communities are selected based on whether they meet certain safety and health requirements and allow trainees to carry out activities that help prepare them for their work. Approximately three to five trainees are placed in each of several communities around the capital city, San José, where they live with a host family. A language and cultural facilitator works closely with each group of trainees, providing formal language classes in trainees’ homes or in another suitable space in the community and practice-based instruction outside of the classroom. Advanced or native Spanish speakers participate in an alternative program that accommodates their particular needs.
  
In fulfilling its mandate to share the face of America with host countries, the Peace Corps is making special efforts to see that all of America’s richness is reflected in the Volunteer corps. More Americans of color are serving in today’s Peace Corps than at any time in recent years. 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.  
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All trainees are assigned integrated training activities, to be completed independently or with assistance from the language and cultural facilitators or members of the community. Trainees are responsible for scheduling the activities and determining what kind of support and resources they need in order to complete them. This neighborhood-based, experiential training is complemented by classroom-based technical, cultural, and health and safety training. On Fridays and some Saturdays, all trainees and staff meet at the Peace Corps office for seminars on the particular training “theme” that serves as a framework for determining weekly activities and as a guide for language instruction.  
  
Our diversity helps us accomplish that goal. In other ways, however, it poses challenges. In Bangladesh, as in other Peace Corps host countries, Volunteers’ behavior, lifestyle, background, and beliefs are judged in a cultural context very different from their own. Certain personal perspectives or characteristics commonly accepted in the United States may be quite uncommon, unacceptable, or even repressed in Bangladesh.  
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The training program include a group field trip to observe functioning projects, a visit to a Volunteer’s site, and one trip to trainees’ future sites, during which trainees begin planning for their future assignments.  
  
Outside of Bangladesh’s capital, residents of rural communities have had relatively little direct exposure to other cultures, races, religions, and lifestyles. What people view as typical American behavior or norms may be a misconception, such as the belief that all Americans are rich and have blond hair and blue eyes. The people of Bangladesh 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 cultural differences that you present.
 
  
To ease the transition and adapt to life in Bangladesh, you may need to make some temporary, yet fundamental compromises in how you present yourself as an American and as an individual. For example, female trainees and Volunteers may not be able to exercise the independence available to them in the United States; political discussions 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 limitations. The Peace Corps staff will be on call to provide support, but the challenge ultimately will be your own.
 
  
===Overview of Diversity in Bangladesh===  
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====Technical Training====
  
The Peace Corps staff in Bangladesh recognizes the adjustment issues that come with diversity and will endeavor to provide support and guidance. During pre-service training, several sessions will be held to discuss diversity and coping mechanisms.  
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Technical training prepares you to work in Costa Rica by building on the skills you already have and helping you develop new skills in a manner appropriate to the needs of the country. The Peace Corps staff, Costa Rican experts, and current Volunteers conduct the training program. Training places great emphasis on learning how to transfer the skills you have to the community in which you will serve as a Volunteer. Training staff will observe your informal presentations to community groups as part of your preparation.  
  
We look forward to having male and female Volunteers from a variety of races, ethnic groups, ages, religions, and sexual orientations and hope that you will become part of a diverse group of Americans who will take pride in supporting one another and demonstrating the richness of American culture.  
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Technical training will include sessions on the general economic and political environment in Costa Rica and strategies for working within such a framework. You will review your technical sector’s goals and will meet with the Costa Rican agencies and organizations that invited the Peace Corps to assist them. You will be supported and evaluated throughout the training to build the confidence and skills you need to undertake your project activities and be a productive member of your community.  
  
===What Might a Volunteer Face?===  
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====Language Training====
  
====Possible Issues for Female Volunteers====
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As a Peace Corps Volunteer, you will find that language skills are the key to personal and professional satisfaction during your service. These skills are critical to your job performance, they help you integrate into your host community, and they can ease your personal adaptation to the new surroundings.
  
In Bangladesh, the virtues of the ideal woman include patience, obedience, endurance, and self-sacrifice. Although women are visible in public, particularly in Dhaka, the majority have limited opportunities outside the home and even face discrimination within their own families. What follows is an outline of the typical rural woman’s life.  
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Therefore, language training is the heart of the training program, and you must successfully meet minimum language requirements to complete training and be sworn-in as a Volunteer. Costa Rican language instructors teach formal language classes three or four mornings a week in small groups of three to five trainees. In the afternoons, trainees receive individual assistance and carry out activities in the community. The language facilitators rotate among trainee groups so that they receive instruction from different facilitators over the 11-week period.  
  
When a girl is born her birth is rarely celebrated and no call for prayer is given, as it would be for a boy. From early childhood, girls are made aware that, unlike their brothers, they are liabilities rather than assets to the family. In a country of great scarcity, what little is available—from food to clothing to education to health care—is offered first to males. Over 50 percent of girls ages six to seven months have stunted growth, and the death rate for girls ages one to four is 15 per 1,000, compared with 12 per 1,000 for boys of the same age.  
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The goal is to get you to a point of basic social communication skills so that you can practice and develop language skills further on your own. Prior to being sworn in as a Volunteer, you will work on strategies to continue language studies during your two years of service.  
  
Girls are trained to take on the only socially acceptable role for a woman, that of wife and mother. From a young age, a girl helps her mother with household chores and looks after younger children. Only 50 percent of girls enroll in primary school, compared with 70 percent of boys. In secondary schools, girls’ attendance is less than half that of boys.
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====Cross-Cultural Training====
  
Beginning at about age 10, segregation of the genders becomes stricter. Some families observe purdah, a Muslim and Hindu practice in which a girl’s movements outside the home are restricted to protect her chastity and reputation. How strictly a young woman observes purdah depends on her economic status, as poorer women in villages need freedom of movement to fetch water, tend animals, and so on.  
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The experience of living with a Costa Rican host family during training is designed to ease your transition to life at your site.  Families go through an orientation conducted by Peace Corps staff to explain the purpose of pre-service training and to assist them in helping you adapt to living in Costa Rica. Many Volunteers form strong and lasting friendships with their host families.  
  
Rural women generally perform tasks at home—cooking, cleaning, and child care—while men negotiate with the outside world as they work in the fields or go to the market. Thus Bangladesh differs from other predominantly Muslim countries where women can freely work in the fields and go to the market. In addition, rural Bangladeshi women generally do not share in tasks that involve earning an income.  
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Cross-cultural and community development training will help you improve your communication skills and understand your role as a facilitator of development. You will be exposed to topics such as community mobilization, conflict resolution, gender and development, nonformal and adult education strategies, cultural diversity, and political structures.  
  
The legal age of marriage is 18; however, 20 percent of women have their first child before age 15, 66 percent before age18, and 80 percent before age 20. Dowries are illegal in Bangladesh but are still very common, as is wife beating. After marriage, a wife’s position is inferior to that of other women in her husband’s household. The twin threats of polygamy and divorce, both sanctioned by Muslim law, help husbands to ensure their wives’ obedience. If a husband instigates divorce, the wife has no choice but to accept the decision, as Muslim law allows a man to divorce his wife on any grounds simply by saying “I divorce you” three times. (Women have the right to initiate divorce but are discouraged from doing so by societal pressure.) An unattached woman, whether single, widowed, or divorced, has little or no social standing, so a wife banished from her husband’s home usually returns to her parents, leaving her children behind.
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====Health Training====
  
As long as they lack an independent means of livelihood and a broader social movement to back them up, women are likely to respond to male domination with only small acts of self-assertion. In urban areas women are more openly assertive, politically conscious, and organized, partly because of the opportunities for wage employment, albeit in low-paying jobs such as garment factory labor and street cleaning. Middle-class urban women have greater opportunities for education and careers, but they are usually employed in traditionally female occupations such as teaching and nursing. There is, however, a small but growing group of extremely well-educated and articulate professional women who are acting as a catalyst for change by helping women get educated, gain employment, and become leaders in their communities. Many organizations work specifically with women’s groups, raising awareness and providing opportunities for women to work together in starting and running their own businesses.  
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During pre-service training, you will be given basic medical training and information. You will be expected to practice preventive healthcare and to take responsibility for your own health by adhering to all medical policies. Trainees are required to attend all medical sessions. The topics include preventive health measures and minor and major medical issues that you might encounter while in Costa Rica.  
  
====Possible Religious Issues for Volunteers====
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Nutrition, mental health, safety and security, setting up a safe living compound, and how to avoid HIV/AIDS and other sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) are also covered.
  
Although Islam was declared the state religion in 1988, freedom of religion is a legal right in Bangladesh. As the dominant religion, Islam is also the major social and cultural force in Bangladeshi society. The Koran forbids drinking alcohol, eating pork, gambling, and money lending for profit. It also lays down the rules for marriage and divorce and the penalties for crimes. Islam seems to give many Bangladeshis enormous patience in the face of extreme poverty and frequent naturaldisasters. An expression one often hears is “Inshallah,” which means “As Allah wills it, so it will be.” Most Bangladeshis view religious identity as a basic fact about a person and are likely to ask about your religion almost as frequently as they ask how many brothers and sisters you have. Many assume that all Americans are Christians, and Volunteers who are not Christian may experience some challenges. Jews in particular may encounter negative attitudes.
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====Safety Training====
  
Although Muslims and Hindus in Bangladesh interact freely on a professional level, there are some animosities between Hindu and Muslim communities. People who are atheists or seem ambiguous about their religious identity may be regarded as foolish or morally reprehensible, as rejecting the religion one is born into is considered a serious matter. Some Volunteers without a specific religion have found calling themselves “humanist” to be a good compromise.  
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During the safety training sessions, you will learn how to adopt a lifestyle that reduces risk in your home, at work, and during your travels. You will also learn appropriate, effective strategies for coping with unwanted attention and about your individual responsibility for promoting safety throughout your service.  
  
[[Category:Bangladesh]]
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Additional Trainings During Volunteer Service
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In its commitment to institutionalize quality training, the Peace Corps has implemented a training system that provides Volunteers with continual opportunities to evaluate their commitment to Peace Corps service while increasing their technical and cross-cultural skills. During service, there are usually three training events. The titles and objectives for those trainings are as follows:
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* In-service training: Provides an opportunity for Volunteers to upgrade their technical, language, and project development skills while sharing their experiences and reaffirming their commitment after serving for three months and again after serving for six months.
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* Midterm conference: Assists Volunteers in reviewing their first year, reassessing their personal and project objectives, and planning for their second year of service.
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* Close of service conference: Prepares Volunteers for the future after Peace Corps service and reviews their respective projects and personal experiences. 
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The number, length, and design of these trainings are adapted to country-specific needs and conditions. The key to the training system is that training events are integrated and interrelated, from the pre-departure orientation through the end of your service, and are planned, implemented, and evaluated cooperatively by the training staff, Peace Corps staff, and Volunteers.
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[[Category:Costa Rica]]
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[[Category:Training|Costa Rica]]

Latest revision as of 08:18, 21 May 2014


Training in [[{{#explode:Training in Costa Rica| |2}} {{#explode:Training in Costa Rica| |3}} {{#explode:Training in Costa Rica| |4}}]]
Pre-service training will probably be the most intense period of your Peace Corps service, as you will need to gain the knowledge and experience necessary to successfully serve as a Volunteer in just 10 weeks. While the training period will be extremely busy, it should also be a time of excitement, discovery, and self-fulfillment. The effort and challenges of adapting to a new culture will draw on your reserves of patience and humor but will be handsomely rewarded with a sense of belonging among new friends.
  • [[Packing list for {{#explode:Training in Costa Rica| |2}} {{#explode:Training in Costa Rica| |3}} {{#explode:Training in Costa Rica| |4}}]]
  • [[Training in {{#explode:Training in Costa Rica| |2}} {{#explode:Training in Costa Rica| |3}} {{#explode:Training in Costa Rica| |4}}]]
  • [[Living conditions and volunteer lifestyles in {{#explode:Training in Costa Rica| |2}} {{#explode:Training in Costa Rica| |3}} {{#explode:Training in Costa Rica| |4}}]]
  • [[Health care and safety in {{#explode:Training in Costa Rica| |2}} {{#explode:Training in Costa Rica| |3}} {{#explode:Training in Costa Rica| |4}}]]
  • [[Diversity and cross-cultural issues in {{#explode:Training in Costa Rica| |2}} {{#explode:Training in Costa Rica| |3}} {{#explode:Training in Costa Rica| |4}}]]
  • [[FAQs about Peace Corps in {{#explode:Training in Costa Rica| |2}} {{#explode:Training in Costa Rica| |3}} {{#explode:Training in Costa Rica| |4}}]]
  • [[History of the Peace Corps in {{#explode:Training in Costa Rica| |2}} {{#explode:Training in Costa Rica| |3}} {{#explode:Training in Costa Rica| |4}}]]
|3}} [[Image:Flag_of_{{#explode:Training in Costa Rica| |2}}.svg|50px|none]]}}

See also:
Pre-Departure Checklist
Staging Timeline

For information see Welcomebooks

[[Category: {{#explode:Training in Costa Rica| |2}} {{#explode:Training in Costa Rica| |3}} {{#explode:Training in Costa Rica| |4}}]]

Pre-service training, which follows a community-based training model, lasts for 11 weeks. Training communities are selected based on whether they meet certain safety and health requirements and allow trainees to carry out activities that help prepare them for their work. Approximately three to five trainees are placed in each of several communities around the capital city, San José, where they live with a host family. A language and cultural facilitator works closely with each group of trainees, providing formal language classes in trainees’ homes or in another suitable space in the community and practice-based instruction outside of the classroom. Advanced or native Spanish speakers participate in an alternative program that accommodates their particular needs.

All trainees are assigned integrated training activities, to be completed independently or with assistance from the language and cultural facilitators or members of the community. Trainees are responsible for scheduling the activities and determining what kind of support and resources they need in order to complete them. This neighborhood-based, experiential training is complemented by classroom-based technical, cultural, and health and safety training. On Fridays and some Saturdays, all trainees and staff meet at the Peace Corps office for seminars on the particular training “theme” that serves as a framework for determining weekly activities and as a guide for language instruction.

The training program include a group field trip to observe functioning projects, a visit to a Volunteer’s site, and one trip to trainees’ future sites, during which trainees begin planning for their future assignments.


Technical Training[edit]

Technical training prepares you to work in Costa Rica by building on the skills you already have and helping you develop new skills in a manner appropriate to the needs of the country. The Peace Corps staff, Costa Rican experts, and current Volunteers conduct the training program. Training places great emphasis on learning how to transfer the skills you have to the community in which you will serve as a Volunteer. Training staff will observe your informal presentations to community groups as part of your preparation.

Technical training will include sessions on the general economic and political environment in Costa Rica and strategies for working within such a framework. You will review your technical sector’s goals and will meet with the Costa Rican agencies and organizations that invited the Peace Corps to assist them. You will be supported and evaluated throughout the training to build the confidence and skills you need to undertake your project activities and be a productive member of your community.

Language Training[edit]

As a Peace Corps Volunteer, you will find that language skills are the key to personal and professional satisfaction during your service. These skills are critical to your job performance, they help you integrate into your host community, and they can ease your personal adaptation to the new surroundings.

Therefore, language training is the heart of the training program, and you must successfully meet minimum language requirements to complete training and be sworn-in as a Volunteer. Costa Rican language instructors teach formal language classes three or four mornings a week in small groups of three to five trainees. In the afternoons, trainees receive individual assistance and carry out activities in the community. The language facilitators rotate among trainee groups so that they receive instruction from different facilitators over the 11-week period.

The goal is to get you to a point of basic social communication skills so that you can practice and develop language skills further on your own. Prior to being sworn in as a Volunteer, you will work on strategies to continue language studies during your two years of service.

Cross-Cultural Training[edit]

The experience of living with a Costa Rican host family during training is designed to ease your transition to life at your site. Families go through an orientation conducted by Peace Corps staff to explain the purpose of pre-service training and to assist them in helping you adapt to living in Costa Rica. Many Volunteers form strong and lasting friendships with their host families.

Cross-cultural and community development training will help you improve your communication skills and understand your role as a facilitator of development. You will be exposed to topics such as community mobilization, conflict resolution, gender and development, nonformal and adult education strategies, cultural diversity, and political structures.

Health Training[edit]

During pre-service training, you will be given basic medical training and information. You will be expected to practice preventive healthcare and to take responsibility for your own health by adhering to all medical policies. Trainees are required to attend all medical sessions. The topics include preventive health measures and minor and major medical issues that you might encounter while in Costa Rica.

Nutrition, mental health, safety and security, setting up a safe living compound, and how to avoid HIV/AIDS and other sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) are also covered.

Safety Training[edit]

During the safety training sessions, you will learn how to adopt a lifestyle that reduces risk in your home, at work, and during your travels. You will also learn appropriate, effective strategies for coping with unwanted attention and about your individual responsibility for promoting safety throughout your service.

Additional Trainings During Volunteer Service

In its commitment to institutionalize quality training, the Peace Corps has implemented a training system that provides Volunteers with continual opportunities to evaluate their commitment to Peace Corps service while increasing their technical and cross-cultural skills. During service, there are usually three training events. The titles and objectives for those trainings are as follows:

  • In-service training: Provides an opportunity for Volunteers to upgrade their technical, language, and project development skills while sharing their experiences and reaffirming their commitment after serving for three months and again after serving for six months.
  • Midterm conference: Assists Volunteers in reviewing their first year, reassessing their personal and project objectives, and planning for their second year of service.
  • Close of service conference: Prepares Volunteers for the future after Peace Corps service and reviews their respective projects and personal experiences.

The number, length, and design of these trainings are adapted to country-specific needs and conditions. The key to the training system is that training events are integrated and interrelated, from the pre-departure orientation through the end of your service, and are planned, implemented, and evaluated cooperatively by the training staff, Peace Corps staff, and Volunteers.