Wow, it has been a LONG few days and feels so good to finally be here.
All 57 volunteers met in Philly on Saturday. The age range is mixed from recent college grads to 60+, with 5 married couples. There are four sectors of work that we are split into, Community Capacity Builders (me), Life Skills, District AIDS Coordinators, and NGO Capacity Building. We had registration, and then discussions with icebreaker type activities for most of the day. We went over expectations, anxieties and aspirations, and some logistics.
Later in the evening we were free so about 15 of us that went to dinner. It was nice to relax for a bit, but a few short hours later we checked out of the airport at 2 am. From there we took a bus to JFK where we were just a liiiitttttle early for our 11 am flight. But after a 15 hour flight from JFK to Johannesburg, waiting in the JoBurg Airport for 8 hours, then a 40 minute flight to Gaborone, Botswana, we are finally here!
We will spend the next few days in Gaborone getting shots, logistical information, and language lessons. Then it’s off to our homestays where we will be for the next 2 months.
I’m excited to find out more about my position, Community Capacity Builder, and see who is in my language group (it’s usually groups of 3 and these are the people we spend the majority of our time with during pre-service training).
Right now I just can’t believe I’m finally here. I’ve wanted this for so long and it’s all happening. A volunteer that is almost done with her 2 years sat with a few of us at dinner and we jumped at the opportunity to ask questions, but there are so many answers you just won’t know until you are at your site. I have a lot of different emotions going on inside of me, but I am very excited for what’s to come.
And everyone, please bare with me as this will probably be the last time I have internet for a while. But feel free to email or Facebook me…I’m sure I will love the messages when I finally do have internet again. Love y’all!