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Fruit-Picking in Paraguay
July 5, 2011, 10:00 am
Filed under: Paraguay, Pictures Post

Training is literally flying by. It’s hard to share everything about my experience that I want to, since things are happening here at lightning speed.

As a highlight, I’ve been enjoying learning more about what our Peace Corps sector (Community Economic Development) does here as Peace Corps Volunteers. After five weeks of jamming material down our throats, the fog is finally starting to lift and I am getting more of a clear picture of the kind of work we do down here to improve the business sector. The most interesting to me is the possibility of working with a cooperative or financial institution in my community. My previous experience as a Kiva fellow really lends to this kind of job placement, and I’ve been fascinated about the kind of work other CED volunteers have been doing with co-ops. Another stand-out to me has been one of our Peace Corps guidebooks, ‘Construye Tus Sueños’ (Construct Your Dreams), which is a manual on basic family finance. Peace Corps Volunteers teach classes on family finance to interested members of the community to help them improve their businesses. Both prospects seem very exciting to me as a Volunteer.

This week our group is in something called ‘Long Field Practice.’ It is a four-day event where we all travel in small groups of 3 or 4 to current CED volunteer sites, where we are expected to give ‘charlas,’ or presentations, to members of their community. This is done to help us learn more about life as a Peace Corps Volunteer and prepare for the kind of work we will be doing once we swear-in (become fully-fledged Peace Corps Volunteers). I am traveling with my language group to Caaguazu, the third largest city in Paraguay, to work with a current CED Volunteer Casey. We will all be taking over Casey’s classes and giving charlas on family finance and savings, teaching a bit of English, and even teaching a few ‘Ahendu’ classes. Ahendu is a Peace Corps-founded organization that teaches Paraguayans how to become photographers. I am really excited to be teaching one of these classes! I will be giving a charla on emotions that pictures evoke, and why it makes them powerful.

I’ll be back this weekend- in the meantime, here are some pictures of one of our training trips to Nueva Italia, where we visited a municipality and school. Really though, the best part was that our tech trainer Ann also lives in Nueva Italia, and she took us to her backyard afterwards to pick all of the delicious fruit off of her trees! Just another amazing day in Paraguay. Enjoy!

Dion making fun of Evelyn for wanting to imitate the cows

Evelyn don’t care what her husband thinks!

A brisk winter morn in Nueva Italia, Paraguay

Our J.A. Trainees walking to Ann’s backyard

PCT Randi shimmying up a tree for pink grapefruit.

Eric trying to grab some oranges

Veronica shared her bag with me. Here is our bag, pre-fruit filled.

Can you imagine walking into an orchard filled with fruit trees, all for the picking? Love the life in Paraguay!

Mandarin trees

Ben using a stick to get down some mandarins

AMAZING. I have never tasted such fresh and delicious fruit.

Our bag, now full of grapefruit, pink grapefruit, lemons, oranges, and mandarins! Thanks Ann for sharing your harvest with us!

Back at the Briar Patch (my room), huddling for warmth and looking at pictures. 

Another amazing day in Paraguay. I love it here.


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Thank you!

Comment by Shawn




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