Cover Image
close this bookAbove and Beyond - Secondary Activities for Peace Corps Volunteers (Peace Corps, 1995, 116 p.)
close this folderPart three - Guidelines for success
View the document(introduction...)
View the documentStarting slowly
View the documentLetting the community take the initiative
View the documentRelying on local resources
View the documentEnjoying the activity
View the documentPaying attention to the nuts and bolts
View the documentKeeping is simple and flexible
View the documentFollowing up, documenting and sharing your experience

Paying attention to the nuts and bolts

Although organizing secondary activities in the Peace Corps is usually not a formalized process, it is important to be systematic in executing them.

Goals need to be fisted end discussed both with people who can advise you and people with whom you will be working.

Defining goals and objectives gives you some yardstick against which to measure your progress. It also helps you to plan the direction your project will take. Casey Vanderbeek realized, for example, that his project had both educational as well as moneymaking objectives, and he had to focus on each separately in order to achieve them.

Plans need to be made, with the people concerned participating.

To be a Trickle Up Program Coordinator, Frank Giarrizzo had to submit detailed plans to the Trickle Up Program, specifying the number of people involved, the types of businesses, and how they would go about organizing them.

Your activity need not be so ambitious, but the planning process remains the same. All of the guidelines mentioned heretofore - deciding whether the idea is a good one; involving the community; getting information, funding, and all the other resources to get your activity underway - require planning. How the activity will be maintained in-country must be clarified. Tasks need to be defined and delegated. The people working with you must participate in this process, so they understand the steps taken and can continue the process once you leave.

The egg production project in Papua New Guinea is a good example of how you can plan an activity with your community. The SPA workshop, duplicated at the village level, enabled the Marcoves and the villagers to look at their proposed activity from a variety of angles. Spending one morning a week, carefully following instructions in the Small Projects Design and Management Training Manual for Volunteers and Counterparts, 2 they largely organized the farm themselves. The villagers prepared the funding proposal, while the Marcoves designed a simple bookkeeping system to have money available to purchase a new batch of chickens when more were needed.