Difference between pages "Training in Peru" and "FAQs about Peace Corps in Turkmenistan"

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{{FAQs by country}}
{| cellpadding="1" cellspacing="5" style="border: 1px solid #9866FF; background-color: #f3f3ff" width="300"
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===How much luggage am I allowed to bring to Turkmenistan? ===
| align="center" | '''<big>Country Resources</big>'''
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|-
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| width="50%" |
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*[[Packing lists by country]]
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*[[Training by country]] 
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*[[Living conditions and volunteer lifestyles by country]]
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*[[Health care and safety by country]]
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*[[Diversity and cross-cultural issues by country]]
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*[[FAQs by country]]
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*[[History of the Peace Corps by country]] 
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|}
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</div>Pre-service training consists of 11 weeks of instruction and practice in six major areas: Spanish language; staying healthy; safety and security; living in the Peruvian culture; the role of the Volunteer in development; and technical project training.  During your training, you will live with a Peruvian family, sharing meals, language, and other activities. Classes are conducted at a training center in Santa Eulalia (about an hour east of Lima), as well as in the surrounding communities where host families live.
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Pre-service training is a dynamic, intense period of learning, and you should be prepared to work hard and absorb as much as possible. By the end of training, as a prerequisite to being sworn in as a Peace Corps Volunteer, you will be required to demonstrate certain competencies in each of the training areas.  
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The Peace Corps will not pay the cost of transport for baggage that exceed airline limits. The current baggage allowance is 2 pieces per person each weighing a maximum of 23&nbsp;kg (50 lbs.) and maximum dimensions of 158&nbsp;cm (62 in.) (addition of L+W+H). Maximum weight allowed is 45&nbsp;kg (100 lbs.) Airline regulations vary and change as a result of factors beyond the control of Peace Corps. For bags exceeding 23&nbsp;kg (50 lbs.) and up to 32&nbsp;kg/pc (70 lbs.) a flat fee of $25 per piece is charged. If the bag exceeds 32&nbsp;kg (70 lbs.) or the maximum dimension of 158&nbsp;cm (62 in.) an additional fee of $180 to $200 (depending on destination) is charged. Carry-on luggage must conform to airline policies. These conditions apply for most of the European and major U.S. carriers, but flights to and from certain countries and on specific airlines will vary. Many things can be bought here, especially clothing items, toiletries, etc. Think long and hard about what you pack and consider doing some of your shopping here.  
  
Training is a time to reflect on your decision to serve as a Volunteer in Peru for the next two years of your life. We expect a strong commitment from each Volunteer. If you develop doubts during training, you will have the opportunity to discuss your feelings and options with Peace Corps staff.  
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Peace Corps Volunteers are not allowed to take pets, weapons, explosives, radio transmitters (shortwave radios are permitted), automobiles, or motorcycles to their overseas assignments. Do not pack flammable materials or liquids such as lighter fluid, cleaning solvents, hair spray, or aerosol containers. This is an important safety precaution.
  
===Language Training ===
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===What is the electric current in Turkmenistan? ===
  
As a Peace Corps Volunteer, you will find that language skills are key to personal and professional satisfaction during your service. They are critical to job performance, integration into your community, and adaptation to new surroundings. Therefore, language training is at the heart of the training program, and you must successfully meet minimum language requirements to become a Volunteer.  
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The electric current in Turkmenistan is 220 volts. If you bring any appliances with you, a small, universal power converter would be very helpful. A surge protector is also highly recommended.  
  
Six days a week you will work with Peruvian language instructors in small groups. Your language training will be provided using multifaceted techniques, including classroom time, field trips, community integration activities, and other assignments outside the classroom. One of the most important learning tools is your host family; time spent interacting with them will help improve your ability to communicate in the Peruvian context.
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===How much money should I bring? ===
  
Your level of Spanish and your site assignment will determine whether you receive instruction in an indigenous language at some point during your service. If so, it would most likely occur as in-service training. Similarly, some Volunteers receive additional Spanish training or tutoring during their service.  
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Volunteers are expected to live at the same level as the people in their community. They are given a settling-in allowance and a monthly living allowance, which should cover their expenses. Often Volunteers wish to bring additional money for vacation travel to other countries, this is a good idea if you plan on taking vacations outside of Turkmenistan. Credit cards and traveler’s checks are preferable to cash for trips. If you choose to bring extra money, bring an amount that will suit your own travel plans and needs.  
  
===Health Training ===
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===When can I take vacation and have people visit me? ===
  
During pre-service training, you will be given basic health training and information. You will be expected to practice preventive healthcare and to take responsibility for your own health by adhering to Peace Corps medical policies. Topics covered during training include nutrition, safe food preparation, mental health, and sexually transmitted diseases (STDs).  
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Each Volunteer accrues two vacation days per month of service (excluding training). Leave may not be taken during training, the first three months of service, or the last three months of service, except in conjunction with an authorized emergency leave. Family and friends are welcome to visit you after pre-service training and after the first three months of service as long as their stay does not interfere with your work.  Extended stays at your site are not encouraged and may require permission from your country director. A local travel company in Ashgabat can help arrange the documents needed for a visit.  
  
===Safety and Security Training ===
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===Will my belongings be covered by insurance? ===
  
During the safety training sessions, you will learn how to adopt a lifestyle that reduces your risks at your home, at work, and during your travels. You will learn appropriate, effective strategies for coping with unwanted attention and about your individual responsibility for promoting safety in all situations throughout your service.  
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The Peace Corps does not provide insurance coverage for personal effects; Volunteers are ultimately responsible for the safekeeping of their personal belongings. However, you can purchase such insurance before you leave. If you wish, you may contact your own insurance company; additionally, insurance application forms will be provided, and we encourage you to consider them carefully. Volunteers should not ship or take valuable items overseas. Jewelry, watches, radios, cameras, and expensive appliances are subject to loss, theft, and breakage, and in many places, satisfactory maintenance and repair services are not available.  
  
===Cross-Cultural Training ===
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===Do I need an international driver’s license? ===
  
Living with a Peruvian host family in a small community during pre-service training will help prepare you for life at your site, where you will also be living with a Peruvian family.  
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Volunteers in Turkmenistan do not need to get an international driver’s license because they are prohibited from operating privately owned motorized vehicles. Most urban travel is by bus or taxi. Rural travel ranges from buses and minibuses to trucks and lots of walking. It is a good idea to renew your US driver’s license if it will expire while you are overseas.  
  
Peace Corps staff provide an extensive orientation to the host  
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===What should I bring as gifts for Turkmen friends and my host family? ===
  
families, showing them how they can help you adapt to living in Peru. Many trainees form strong and lasting friendships with their host families.  
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Gifts are not required, but we encourage you to bring something small to give to your host family when you meet them at the end of your first week in-country. You may also want to bring a similar gift for the second host family with whom you will live at your permanent worksite for a minimum of six months after beginning your service. Some gift suggestions include knickknacks for the house; pictures, books, or calendars of American scenes; souvenirs from your area; hard candies that will not melt or spoil; or photos to give away.  
  
In addition, you will participate in an extensive array of cross-cultural training sessions, covering Peruvian history, regional customs, and the Peruvian political structure. You will go on field trips to places of historical note and will have a chance to apply your cross-cultural knowledge through hands-on activities.
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===Where will my site assignment be when I finish training and how isolated will I be? ===
  
During pre-service training, you will also receive a good grounding in development theory and practice. You will have an opportunity to visit current Volunteers at their sites and observe successful ongoing projects. A series of sessions will help you understand your role as a development worker. You will build skills in areas such as community assessment and nonformal education techniques. You will learn about the role gender plays in the development process. You will participate in hands-on community development activities in communities close to the training center, under the guidance of Peace Corps/Peru trainers. About three weeks before you are sworn-in, you will have the opportunity to visit your future site, meet your future counterparts, and draft an initial work plan for the coming months.  
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Peace Corps trainees are assigned to individual sites during pre-service training, after the Peace Corps staff has the opportunity to assess each trainee’s technical and language skills and finalize site selections with ministry counterparts.  
  
===Technical Training ===
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If feasible, you may have the opportunity to provide input on your site preferences, including geographical location, distance from other Volunteers, and living conditions.  However, keep in mind that many factors influence the site selection process and that the Peace Corps cannot guarantee placement where you would ideally like to be. You will have an opportunity to visit your permanent site for a few days during training. Most Volunteers live in small towns or in rural villages and are usually within one hour from another Volunteer. Some sites require a 10- to 12-hour drive from the capital.
  
Technical training will prepare you to work in Peru by building on the skills you already have and by helping you develop new skills that address the needs of your community and the goals of your assignment. Great emphasis is placed on learning how to transfer these skills to the community in which you will serve as a Volunteer. Peace Corps staff, Peruvian experts, current Volunteers, and former Volunteers all actively participate in the training program.
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===How can my family contact me in an emergency? ===
  
Technical training will include sessions on the general economic and political environment in Peru and strategies for working within such a framework. You will learn how things get done in Peru, and will meet with Peruvian agencies that Peace Corps is collaborating with to facilitate Peru’s development. You will be supported and evaluated throughout the training so you can build the confidence and skills you need to undertake your project activities and be a productive Peace Corps Volunteer.  
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The Peace Corps’ Office of Special Services provides assistance in handling emergencies affecting trainees and Volunteers or their families. Before leaving the United States, you should instruct your family to notify the Office of Special Services immediately if an emergency arises, such as a serious illness or death of a family member. During normal business hours, the number for the Office of Special Services is 800.424.8580, extension 1470. After normal business hours and on weekends and holidays, the Special Services duty officer can be reached at 202.638.2574. For non-emergency questions, your family can get information from your country desk staff at the Peace Corps by calling 800.424.8580.  
  
===In-Service Training===
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===Can I call home from Turkmenistan? ===
  
During your Peace Corps service, you will participate in a series of training workshops designed to further build your skills. In some cases, you will attend with a community counterpart. In other cases, the workshops are for Volunteers only.  
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Yes. Although there is direct-dial access in some regions of the country, in most areas international calls (except those to other CIS countries) must be booked through an operator, which can cause significant delays in placing calls. The current rate for calls to United States is approximately $1 per minute; there are no discounted periods.  
  
Volunteers attend a two-day workshop about three months after swearing-in that focuses on the adjustment process to-date and on refining their work plans. Roughly three months later, Volunteers and counterparts attend a second workshop covering how to design and implement community-based projects.
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===Should I bring a cellular phone with me? ===
  
Other types of workshops that may occur during a Volunteer’s term of service are sector-specific workshops in which Volunteers share best practices and learn new skills; theme-specific workshops, for example, disaster preparedness and mitigation); and language training.  
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No, because you probably will not be able to use it in Turkmenistan. Cellphone coverage is limited but is becoming available in more areas of the country. Satellite phones also are rare, and having one might make Turkmen think you are a spy.
  
Finally, about three months before a group completes its Peace Corps service, Volunteers attend a close-of-service (COS) conference, which provides an opportunity to review Volunteers’ experiences and prepare the Volunteers for the future.
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===Will there be e-mail and Internet access? Should I bring my computer? ===
  
The entire training curriculum is designed to be an integrated continuum, from pre-departure orientation through the COS conference. Each training activity is interrelated with all other training activities, to provide you with a complete set of skills to be an effective and productive Volunteer.  
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Internet access is very limited, so most Volunteers do not have regular access to e-mail. It is a good idea to explain this to family and friends so that they do not worry when they do not hear from you often. Some Volunteers bring laptop computers, but they are responsible for insuring and maintaining the computers themselves; the Peace Corps will not replace stolen computers and strongly encourages those who bring them to get personal property insurance. Because of the high value of laptops, owners significantly increase their risk of becoming a victim of crime. You probably will not find the same level of technical assistance and service here as you would at home, and replacement parts could take months to arrive. Also note that gaining Internet access via your laptop is only a remote possibility because few Volunteers have telephone lines in their home or adequate lines in their community or place of work. If you bring a laptop, be sure to buy a surge protector, as electrical lapses and surges are common.  
  
[[Category:Peru]]
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[[Category:Turkmenistan]]
[[Category:Training|Peru]]
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Latest revision as of 11:54, 8 December 2015

Country Resources

How much luggage am I allowed to bring to Turkmenistan?[edit]

The Peace Corps will not pay the cost of transport for baggage that exceed airline limits. The current baggage allowance is 2 pieces per person each weighing a maximum of 23 kg (50 lbs.) and maximum dimensions of 158 cm (62 in.) (addition of L+W+H). Maximum weight allowed is 45 kg (100 lbs.) Airline regulations vary and change as a result of factors beyond the control of Peace Corps. For bags exceeding 23 kg (50 lbs.) and up to 32 kg/pc (70 lbs.) a flat fee of $25 per piece is charged. If the bag exceeds 32 kg (70 lbs.) or the maximum dimension of 158 cm (62 in.) an additional fee of $180 to $200 (depending on destination) is charged. Carry-on luggage must conform to airline policies. These conditions apply for most of the European and major U.S. carriers, but flights to and from certain countries and on specific airlines will vary. Many things can be bought here, especially clothing items, toiletries, etc. Think long and hard about what you pack and consider doing some of your shopping here.

Peace Corps Volunteers are not allowed to take pets, weapons, explosives, radio transmitters (shortwave radios are permitted), automobiles, or motorcycles to their overseas assignments. Do not pack flammable materials or liquids such as lighter fluid, cleaning solvents, hair spray, or aerosol containers. This is an important safety precaution.

What is the electric current in Turkmenistan?[edit]

The electric current in Turkmenistan is 220 volts. If you bring any appliances with you, a small, universal power converter would be very helpful. A surge protector is also highly recommended.

How much money should I bring?[edit]

Volunteers are expected to live at the same level as the people in their community. They are given a settling-in allowance and a monthly living allowance, which should cover their expenses. Often Volunteers wish to bring additional money for vacation travel to other countries, this is a good idea if you plan on taking vacations outside of Turkmenistan. Credit cards and traveler’s checks are preferable to cash for trips. If you choose to bring extra money, bring an amount that will suit your own travel plans and needs.

When can I take vacation and have people visit me?[edit]

Each Volunteer accrues two vacation days per month of service (excluding training). Leave may not be taken during training, the first three months of service, or the last three months of service, except in conjunction with an authorized emergency leave. Family and friends are welcome to visit you after pre-service training and after the first three months of service as long as their stay does not interfere with your work. Extended stays at your site are not encouraged and may require permission from your country director. A local travel company in Ashgabat can help arrange the documents needed for a visit.

Will my belongings be covered by insurance?[edit]

The Peace Corps does not provide insurance coverage for personal effects; Volunteers are ultimately responsible for the safekeeping of their personal belongings. However, you can purchase such insurance before you leave. If you wish, you may contact your own insurance company; additionally, insurance application forms will be provided, and we encourage you to consider them carefully. Volunteers should not ship or take valuable items overseas. Jewelry, watches, radios, cameras, and expensive appliances are subject to loss, theft, and breakage, and in many places, satisfactory maintenance and repair services are not available.

Do I need an international driver’s license?[edit]

Volunteers in Turkmenistan do not need to get an international driver’s license because they are prohibited from operating privately owned motorized vehicles. Most urban travel is by bus or taxi. Rural travel ranges from buses and minibuses to trucks and lots of walking. It is a good idea to renew your US driver’s license if it will expire while you are overseas.

What should I bring as gifts for Turkmen friends and my host family?[edit]

Gifts are not required, but we encourage you to bring something small to give to your host family when you meet them at the end of your first week in-country. You may also want to bring a similar gift for the second host family with whom you will live at your permanent worksite for a minimum of six months after beginning your service. Some gift suggestions include knickknacks for the house; pictures, books, or calendars of American scenes; souvenirs from your area; hard candies that will not melt or spoil; or photos to give away.

Where will my site assignment be when I finish training and how isolated will I be?[edit]

Peace Corps trainees are assigned to individual sites during pre-service training, after the Peace Corps staff has the opportunity to assess each trainee’s technical and language skills and finalize site selections with ministry counterparts.

If feasible, you may have the opportunity to provide input on your site preferences, including geographical location, distance from other Volunteers, and living conditions. However, keep in mind that many factors influence the site selection process and that the Peace Corps cannot guarantee placement where you would ideally like to be. You will have an opportunity to visit your permanent site for a few days during training. Most Volunteers live in small towns or in rural villages and are usually within one hour from another Volunteer. Some sites require a 10- to 12-hour drive from the capital.

How can my family contact me in an emergency?[edit]

The Peace Corps’ Office of Special Services provides assistance in handling emergencies affecting trainees and Volunteers or their families. Before leaving the United States, you should instruct your family to notify the Office of Special Services immediately if an emergency arises, such as a serious illness or death of a family member. During normal business hours, the number for the Office of Special Services is 800.424.8580, extension 1470. After normal business hours and on weekends and holidays, the Special Services duty officer can be reached at 202.638.2574. For non-emergency questions, your family can get information from your country desk staff at the Peace Corps by calling 800.424.8580.

Can I call home from Turkmenistan?[edit]

Yes. Although there is direct-dial access in some regions of the country, in most areas international calls (except those to other CIS countries) must be booked through an operator, which can cause significant delays in placing calls. The current rate for calls to United States is approximately $1 per minute; there are no discounted periods.

Should I bring a cellular phone with me?[edit]

No, because you probably will not be able to use it in Turkmenistan. Cellphone coverage is limited but is becoming available in more areas of the country. Satellite phones also are rare, and having one might make Turkmen think you are a spy.

Will there be e-mail and Internet access? Should I bring my computer?[edit]

Internet access is very limited, so most Volunteers do not have regular access to e-mail. It is a good idea to explain this to family and friends so that they do not worry when they do not hear from you often. Some Volunteers bring laptop computers, but they are responsible for insuring and maintaining the computers themselves; the Peace Corps will not replace stolen computers and strongly encourages those who bring them to get personal property insurance. Because of the high value of laptops, owners significantly increase their risk of becoming a victim of crime. You probably will not find the same level of technical assistance and service here as you would at home, and replacement parts could take months to arrive. Also note that gaining Internet access via your laptop is only a remote possibility because few Volunteers have telephone lines in their home or adequate lines in their community or place of work. If you bring a laptop, be sure to buy a surge protector, as electrical lapses and surges are common.