2008 volunteer survey questions

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In progress of sorting questions by country. (To view all responses for the same question).

  • Completed:
    • Section I (partial)
    • Section H

See also 2008 Biennial Volunteer Survey

A. Your Peace Corps Assignment

The term "primary assignment" refers to your assignment which is part of an overall project plan designed by your host country partners and in-country Peace Corps staff.

  • A1. How many months have you been in your current host country, including PST (Pre-Service Training)?
  • A2. Which of the following best describes your primary assignment?
  • A3. Which of the following initiatives does your primary work also include?
  • A4. How many hours do you spend on your primary assignment during an average work week?
  • A5. To what extent are your skills, interests, and experiences used by your primary assignment?
  • A6. Which of the following do your secondary activities include?
  • A7. How many hours do you spend on secondary activities (initiatives other than your primary assignment work) during an average work week?
  • A8. To what extent is the Peace Corps work you do personally satisfying?


B. Training for your Peace Corps Assignment

Your responses here will help staff at headquarters assess and enhance the effectiveness of Volunteer training.

  • B1. How long was your Pre-Service Training (PST) before you were sworn in as a Volunteer?
  • B2. Please evaluate your Pre-Service Training (PST) effectiveness in preparing you to—
    • a. Manage cultural differences
    • b. Deal with adjustment issues
    • c. Work with counterparts
    • d. Use language needed in work and social interactions
    • e. Perform technical aspects of your work
    • f. Work with project goals and objectives
    • g. Use participatory development assessments (e.g., Participatory Analysis for Community Action or PACA)
    • h. Monitor project goals and outcomes
    • i. Maintain your physical health
    • j. Maintain your mental/emotional health
    • k. Maintain your personal safety and security
  • B3. What aspects of your PST could have been improved? Please be specific and provide examples.
  • B4. Please evaluate your In-Service Training (IST) effectiveness in preparing you to—
    • a. Manage cultural differences
    • b. Deal with adjustment issues
    • c. Build and strengthen working relationships with counterparts
    • d. Use language needed in work and social interactions
    • e. Perform technical aspects of your work
    • f. Work with project goals and objectives
    • g. Use participatory development assessments (e.g., Participatory Analysis for Community Action or PACA)
    • h. Monitor project goals and outcomes
    • i. Maintain your physical health
    • j. Maintain your mental/emotional health
    • k. Maintain your personal safety and security
  • B5. What aspects of your IST could be improved? Please be specific and provide examples.
  • B6. Please give us feedback about the following skills in relation to your work.
    • B6.1 Did you have the skill before joining the Peace Corps?
      • a. Skills specific to my assignment
      • b. Assessing community needs
      • c. Organizing/implementing community activities
      • d. Building capacity of local organizations
      • e. Monitoring, reporting and evaluating my work
      • f. Designing and implementing training sessions
    • B6.2 Is the skill needed for your Peace Corps work?
      • a. Skills specific to my assignment
      • b. Assessing community needs
      • c. Organizing/implementing community activities
      • d. Building capacity of local organizations
      • e. Monitoring, reporting and evaluating my work
      • f. Designing and implementing training sessions
    • B6.3 Have you had adequate Peace Corps training to acquire the skill?
      • a. Skills specific to my assignment
      • b. Assessing community needs
      • c. Organizing/implementing community activities
      • d. Building capacity of local organizations
      • e. Monitoring, reporting and evaluating my work
      • f. Designing and implementing training sessions


C. Your life in the Peace Corps

These questions help us monitor and compare Volunteer living conditions. Your access to information and communications will help us to know the options available to reach Volunteers.

  • C1. Please choose the best description of your assigned site.
  • C2. Have you lived with a host country individual or family (including living in a family’s compound)?
  • C3. How integrated into your community do you feel now?
  • C4. How well can you communicate in the language used by most local people now?
  • C5. How well does your living allowance meet your basic needs?
  • C6. How far away (in distance and time) is the closest PCV to you, other than your spouse or site mates?
    • a. kilometers
    • b. minutes by my typical type of transportation (e.g., walking, bicycle, bus, etc.)
  • C7. How often do you see other PCVs (not including spouse or site mates, if applicable)?
  • C8. Do you prefer to have other PCVs living near you?
  • C9. Do you have the following...
    • a. ...at your residence?
      • a. Electricity
      • b. Running water
      • c. Landline telephone
      • d. Short-wave radio
      • e. Cell phone
      • f. Satellite phone
      • g. Computer
      • h. Internet access
    • b. ...at your work site?
      • a. Electricity
      • b. Running water
      • c. Landline telephone
      • d. Short-wave radio
      • e. Cell phone
      • f. Satellite phone
      • g. Computer
      • h. Internet access
  • C10. Please describe how often you typically use the following...
    • a. ...for work use?
      • a. Landline telephone
      • b. Short-wave radio
      • c. Cell phone
      • d. Satellite phone
      • e. Computer
      • f. Internet
      • g. Email
      • h. Text messaging
      • i. Other telecommunication:
    • b. ...for personal use?
      • a. Landline telephone
      • b. Short-wave radio
      • c. Cell phone
      • d. Satellite phone
      • e. Computer
      • f. Internet
      • g. Email
      • h. Text messaging
      • i. Other telecommunication:
  • C11. From the list below, choose the THREE most effective ways that you use to communicate with Peace Corps staff.
  • C12. In general, how do you rate the effectiveness of your communication resources for contacting your Peace Corps staff in-country?
  • C13. Please mark the typical ways in which you cope with stress.
    • a. I "talk" with: (i.e., in-person, by phone or email)
    • b. I do the following:


D. Volunteer Assignment Goals and Impact

Your answers will provide important documentation of the impact of your Volunteer service.

  • D1. Your Volunteer assignment work is part of an overall project plan. How clear to you are the following aspects of your Volunteer assignment?
    • a. Project plan’s goals and objectives
    • b. Project activities
    • c. My role and responsibilities
    • d. Sponsoring agency’s responsibilities
    • e. My APCD/Program Manager’s responsibilities
    • f. Monitoring, reporting and evaluating tasks
  • D2. To what extent does your Volunteer assignment work address the following?
    • a. Meets the objectives of my project
    • b. Builds local capacity for sustainability
    • c. Involves local people in planning and implementing activities
    • d. Complements other local development activities
    • e. Transfers skills to host country individuals and organizations
    • f. Mobilizes host country nationals (HCNs) to volunteer
    • g. Helps promote a better understanding of Americans on the part of the peoples served
    • h. Helps promote a better understanding of other peoples on the part of Americans
  • D3. How much impact does your assignment have on the capacities of your host country counterparts (e.g., teachers, health workers, community leaders)?
    • a. Ability to access information (e.g, library, internet, etc.)
    • b. Leadership skills
    • c. Planning and management
    • d. Problem solving
    • e. Self-esteem
    • f. Technical skills
    • g. Use of local resources
    • h. Use of external resources (e.g., grants, international NGOs)
    • i Better understanding of Americans
    • j. Other
  • D4. How much impact does your assignment have on the capacities of host country individuals (e.g., students, farmers, villagers) with whom you work?
    • a. Ability to access information (e.g, library, internet, etc.)
    • b. Leadership skills
    • c. Planning and management
    • d. Problem solving
    • e. Self-esteem
    • f. Technical skills
    • g. Use of local resources
    • h. Use of external resources (e.g., grants, international NGOs)
    • i Better understanding of Americans
    • j. Other
  • D5. Based on your contact with host country nationals, to what extent have host country individuals gained a better understanding of Americans?
  • D6. Please provide examples of how you have helped people from your host country gain a better understanding of Americans.
  • D7. To what extent does your assignment enhance the capacities of organizations (e.g., NGO, school, community group) with whom you work?
    • a. Identifying and prioritizing organizational needs
    • b. Leadership
    • c. Management
    • d. Monitoring and evaluation
    • e. Planning and implementing organizational activities
    • f. Teamwork/participatory decision-making
    • g. Use of local resources
    • h. Better understanding of Americans
    • i. Other
  • D8. Peace Corps’ third goal is to "help promote a better understanding of other peoples on the part of Americans." In which of the following third goal activities (including contact with family and friends) have you participated during your Peace Corps service?
  • D9. Would you recommend participation in the Coverdell World Wise Schools/Correspondence Match (CWWS/CM) to other Volunteers?
  • D10. Please evaluate the following resources that you use to support your Volunteer activities.
    • a. HIV/AIDS funds–PEPFAR/VAST
    • b. PC Partnership Program (PCPP)
    • c. Resource Center materials
    • d. Small Project Assistance (SPA)
    • e. Other:


E. Peace Corps Support

Your answers will identify areas where support may need to be improved, as well as areas which are meeting your needs.

  • E1. How soon after you arrived in your community was adequate housing available?
  • E2. When you arrived at your community, how prepared for your arrival were the host people with whom you work?
  • E3. How well prepared was your site upon your arrival?
  • E4. How many hours on average does it take you, by your usual means of travel, to reach--
    • a. Main Peace Corps office
    • b. Regional PC office
    • c. PC-approved health care provider
  • E5. How satisfied are you with the healthcare you received from your PCMO(s)?
  • E6. Have you experienced a family or personal emergency since you started as a PCV?
    • a. How much support and assistance did you receive from Peace Corps?
    • b. Please comment on the support you received.
  • E7. Since swearing in, how satisfied are you with the following support provided by in-country Peace Corps staff?
    • a. Administrative/logistical
    • b. Cross-cultural
    • c. Emotional
    • d. Feedback on my work reports
    • e. Job assignment
    • f. Language learning
    • g. Management
    • h. Medical
    • i. Safety and security
    • j. Site selection
    • k. Technical skills
  • E8. How much support do you receive from your host country supervisors, sponsors, or counterparts in the following areas?
    • a. Administrative/logistical
    • b. Cross-cultural
    • c. Emotional
    • d. Feedback on my project activities
    • e. Job development
    • f. Language
    • g. Safety and security
    • h. Technical skills
  • E9. How much Peace Corps support do you receive to help you cope with the stress of HIV/AIDS in your community?
  • E10. How would you rate the visit/s you received from post staff in terms of the following?
    • a. Country Director
      • 1. Informative content
      • 2. My comfort level discussing issues
      • 3. Responsiveness to my issues
    • b. APCD/program manager
      • 1. Informative content
      • 2. My comfort level discussing issues
      • 3. Responsiveness to my issues
    • c. Program Training Officer/ Sub-reg. PT Coordinator
      • 1. Informative content
      • 2. My comfort level discussing issues
      • 3. Responsiveness to my issues
    • d. PCMO
      • 1. Informative content
      • 2. My comfort level discussing issues
      • 3. Responsiveness to my issues
    • e. Safety and Security Coordinator
      • 1. Informative content
      • 2. My comfort level discussing issues
      • 3. Responsiveness to my issues
    • f. Other
      • 1. Informative content
      • 2. My comfort level discussing issues
      • 3. Responsiveness to my issues
  • E11. To what extent does your Country Director interact with Volunteers through training events, inservice conferences, site visits, Volunteer Advisory Council meetings and other informal interaction to be aware of Volunteer issues and concerns?
  • E12. To what extent do the following create stress/emotional health issues for you?
    • a. Cultural issues
    • b. Dealing with violence in country
    • c. Health/medical problems
    • d. Issues including family, friends, loved ones in U.S.
    • e. Isolation/loneliness
    • f. Local language
    • g. Primary assignment
    • h. Relationships with HCNs
    • i. Relationships with other Volunteers
    • j. Relationships with PC staff
    • k. Safety and security
    • l. Other


F. Your Safety and Security

Your answers will help us improve the personal safety of Volunteers while in the Peace Corps. Please remember that the survey is anonymous and will be sealed by you to keep your answers confidential. Your answers will help the Peace Corps improve safety and security training, support, and services.

  • F1. How safe do you feel...
    • a. Where you live
    • b. Where you work
    • c. When you travel in-country
    • d. City where main Peace Corps office is located
  • F2. How informed do you feel about events in your host country that might affect your safety?
  • F3. What are your three most effective sources of information about in-country events that might affect your safety?
  • F4. When traveling in your host country, how often has your safety been threatened by any of the following?
    • a. Transportation conditions (e.g., vehicles, drivers, roads, etc.)
    • b. Police stops
    • c. Lodging conditions when traveling
    • d. Harassment by strangers when traveling
  • F5. What types of transportation conditions pose the greatest threat to your safety?
  • F6. In the past 12 months in your host country, how often have you personally experienced and reported any of the following in your community and outside your community?
    • a. In your community over the past 12 months
      • 1. Number of times you experienced
        • a. Burglary (illegal entry into your permanent or temporary housing, whether or not anything is taken)
        • b. Theft (no confrontation with thief; for example, pickpocket gets your wallet)
        • c. Robbery (thief used or threatened force or weapon to take money/items; for example, thief threatened you with knife and took your wallet/purse)
        • d. Physical assault (without a weapon and no serious injury)
        • e. Aggravated assault (assault with a weapon or serious injury)
        • f. Sexual assault other than rape
        • g. Rape
      • 2. Number of times you reported to PC
        • a. Burglary (illegal entry into your permanent or temporary housing, whether or not anything is taken)
        • b. Theft (no confrontation with thief; for example, pickpocket gets your wallet)
        • c. Robbery (thief used or threatened force or weapon to take money/items; for example, thief threatened you with knife and took your wallet/purse)
        • d. Physical assault (without a weapon and no serious injury)
        • e. Aggravated assault (assault with a weapon or serious injury)
        • f. Sexual assault other than rape
        • g. Rape
    • b. Out of community over the past 12 months
      • 1. Number of times you experienced
        • a. Burglary (illegal entry into your permanent or temporary housing, whether or not anything is taken)
        • b. Theft (no confrontation with thief; for example, pickpocket gets your wallet)
        • c. Robbery (thief used or threatened force or weapon to take money/items; for example, thief threatened you with knife and took your wallet/purse)
        • d. Physical assault (without a weapon and no serious injury)
        • e. Aggravated assault (assault with a weapon or serious injury)
        • f. Sexual assault other than rape
        • g. Rape
      • 2. Number of times you reported to PC
        • a. Burglary (illegal entry into your permanent or temporary housing, whether or not anything is taken)
        • b. Theft (no confrontation with thief; for example, pickpocket gets your wallet)
        • c. Robbery (thief used or threatened force or weapon to take money/items; for example, thief threatened you with knife and took your wallet/purse)
        • d. Physical assault (without a weapon and no serious injury)
        • e. Aggravated assault (assault with a weapon or serious injury)
        • f. Sexual assault other than rape
        • g. Rape
  • F7. If you experienced and reported any of the following in the past 12 months in your host country, please mark to whom you reported the crime(s).
    • a. Burglary (illegal entry into your permanent or temporary housing, whether or not anything is taken)
    • b. Theft (no confrontation with thief; for example, pickpocket gets your wallet)
    • c. Robbery (thief used or threatened force or weapon to take money/items; for example, thief threatened you with knife and took your wallet/purse)
    • d. Physical assault (without a weapon and no serious injury)
    • e. Aggravated assault (assault with a weapon or serious injury)
    • f. Sexual assault other than rape
    • g. Rape
  • F8. If you did not report your experience with crime, please mark your reason(s) for not reporting the crime(s).
    • a. Burglary (illegal entry into your permanent or temporary housing, whether or not anything is taken)
    • b. Theft (no confrontation with thief; for example, pickpocket gets your wallet)
    • c. Robbery (thief used or threatened force or weapon to take money/items; for example, thief threatened you with knife and took your wallet/purse)
    • d. Physical assault (without a weapon and no serious injury)
    • e. Aggravated assault (assault with a weapon or serious injury)
    • f. Sexual assault other than rape
    • g. Rape
  • F9. If you experienced any of the following during the last 12 months in your host country, please indicate who you believe was responsible.
    • a. Burglary
    • b. Theft
    • c. Robbery
    • d. Physical assault
    • e. Aggravated assault
    • f. Sexual assault other than rape
    • g. Rape
  • F10. If you experienced discrimination/harassment during the last 12 months in your host country, please mark who was responsible for that type of discrimination/harassment.
    • a. Age
    • b. Anti-American
    • c. Disability
    • d. Gender discrimination
    • e. Racial/color/ethnicity
    • f. Religious
    • g. Sexual (verbal)
    • h. Sexual (physical)
    • i. Sexual orientation


G. Volunteers working in HIV/AIDS

Peace Corps will use this information to better support the work of Volunteers in HIV/AIDS.

  • G1. Which of the following best describes your involvement in HIV/AIDS activities?
  • G2. How well has Peace Corps training (PST, IST, and host-country sponsored) prepared you to undertake your HIV/AIDS activities?
  • G3. What resources have you found useful in your work on HIV/AIDS?
  • G4. To whom do you go when you need more information or advice in order to do a better job on HIV/AIDS in your community?
  • G5. What would be helpful to you now in your HIV/AIDS work?
  • G6. How important is it that Peace Corps provide you with emotional support/someone to talk to about coping with HIV/AIDS in your community?
  • G7. In working with host country individuals or groups, how would you rate the effectiveness of your specific HIV/AIDS activities?
  • G8. Please explain your answer to Question 7 and provide examples or any other comments about your work in HIV/AIDS:


H. Your overall assessment of your Peace Corps experience

I. Background Information

This information tells us how different groups answer survey questions and shows us if any group is not well represented.

J. Your Recommendation

  • 1. How can the Peace Corps better address the needs of your host country?
  • 2. How are the realities of Peace Corps service different from your expectations before you became a Volunteer?
  • 3. If you have additional comments or concerns you would like to share, please do so on the lines provided below.