The suspense is real on week 10 of Pre-Service Training here in Peace Corps. Reason being that everyone is anxious to find out where they will be situated on the map of Nicaragua for the next 2 years of their service.
Peace Corps staff got creative and traced a map of Nicaragua on the floor with stars indicating the placement sites of future volunteers! Name by name got called and trainees stepped on their little stars soon to be their home for the next 2 years! I will keep emphasizing two years because it’s an incredibly long time that we will get to spend here doing epic development work.
Villa del Carmen, Managua… is Rebeccah’s site! A small town situated an hour outside of the city center of Managua where my group and I landed just two and a half months ago.
My rural ‘pueblito’ (small town) is made up of about 8,000 people who earn their living in lime mines or by working jobs in the city of Managua. Villa del Carmen is right in-between the city of Managua and the Pacific Coast where you can find private beaches, ecolodges, yoga and surfing. This means beach clean-ups with my students and turtle conservation projects!
Despite the healthy production of sugarcane, corn, beans, wheat and sesame crops in my community, the population of Villa del Carmen is the poorest and most underdeveloped municipality in the department of Managua, hence why a volunteer like myself is needed!
I will be the first environmental volunteer to serve in Villa del Carmen through Peace Corps in several years and am excited to be a positive presence in the community in terms of skills and knowledge surrounding environmental education. Tomorrow I leave for site visit to formally meet my counterparts and host family before I swear-in on November 9th. Let’s do this!