What makes the first year on the field so tough? Here are some answers from those who have been there and helped others through that time.
Some things that happen before you go to the field make a difference about how difficult that first year will be. A one month field trip is invaluable. Lea says, “This sounds like expensive advice but I have found out through lots of experience working with PWs that it is one of the best investments anyone can make. This month long visit not only helps prepare a person for what to bring when they come out but also opens their eyes to a few of the difficulties they may face overseas. ”
Developing a close relationship that you can continue through email would be a lifesaver. We all need someone we can confide in and having someone not related to our board or field will give us much needed perspective when we go through rough water. Many of us have found, however, that the “folks back home” cannot relate to our field experience, so someone who has lived overseas would be the best type person for a confidante.