As you may have heard, I recently accepted an
invitation to serve with the Peace Corps in South Africa. It has been a
looooong, slow, and frustrating application process, but it has been so worth
the wait. What started almost a year ago as an unlikely possibility has become
a real, life-changing opportunity. I am so, so grateful for everybody that has
been there to support, encourage, and simply listen to me as I have tried to
figure it all out.
I leave for a 27-month assignment in South Africa in
July, returning to the US in September 2014. I will be working mainly as a
teacher, providing English instruction to primary school students. My job will
also include promoting HIV/ AIDS awareness and other secondary projects to
address the specific needs of my community. I will live with a host family. I
may or may not have electricity, and I will probably not have running water. I
will stay in touch by writing letters and occasional internet access. Aside
from that… your guess is as good as mine! I’m really excited to start to learn
more details about my placement.
I can’t possibly name all the reasons why I want
to do this, but I can tell you where it started. I remember reading an article
in a magazine about orphans in Africa when I was a freshman in high school. I
was 14 years old and I didn’t understand why I got to live in a way that was so
completely different from another human being, just because of where I happened
to be born. I thought to myself, “I have got to do something about this.” Shortly after that,
I began researching ways to get involved in volunteering abroad. Peace Corps
was the clear winner. That dream never faded, and now I get to live it. I am
anxious, scared out of my mind, and more excited than I have ever been in my
life. I have thought long and hard about this decision. It’s one that I just
can’t pass up.
I hope this blog serves as some kind of
communication to the outside world as I spend the next two years in a mud hut
on the other side of the globe. I have less than two months left in the States at
this point, which is not nearly enough time to express to everyone how much I
will miss them, but I’m gonna try! Send questions my way and I will try my
best to answer them. Much love to you all!