The Northern Coast

The Northern Coast
The Northern Coast--photo by Zack Thieman

Friday, April 13, 2012

The Ten Commandments of being a Peace Corps Volunteer

I often enjoy listening to podcasts while I'm doing busy work, like making posters for my charlas, laundry, or cleaning my room.

I recently listened to This American Life's show on The Ten Commandments, which also featured The Ten Commandments of just about everything under the sun, like the Ten Commandments of Tractor Safety, The Ten Commandments of Paris Dining, etc. (In case you need a brush up on the real Ten Commandments <---- check out this link.)

So it made me wonder, has anyone made a Ten Commandments list for Peace Corps Volunteers? I mean, we have our Ten Core Expectations, of course, but I was thinking something volunteer-made.

I looked it up and found one hit for a blog from a volunteer named Quilen, back in 2008. (You can check out the blog here) And well, to be honest, I wasn't too impressed. They seem to be written as motivation for success for other volunteers, but The Ten Commandments he wrote could have been summed up in two-- 1) "buck up," and 2) "there's no one to blame but yourself."

So, it is with great condemning pleasure I present to you my very own,

Heston's saying, "Do I really have to follow #7?"
Ten Commandments of being a Peace Corps Volunteer

#1--Peace Corps is thy employer and brought thee out of the U.S.A. into the land of thy host country, and therefore is thy one and only true employer. Thou shall go where Peace Corps asks thee to go, and live as those in thy host country live.

#2--Thou shall not try to convert thy host-country concerning political or religious affiliations, for Peace Corps does not prescribe to any and does not discriminate nor support one or the other.

#3--Thou shall not sully the name of Peace Corps, nor make ill-use of it in thy blog. Peace Corps will not hold guiltless he who ruins its reputation. 

#4--Remember the personal day, and keep it holy. Thou lives where thou workest, and therefore are constantly working. Take a day exclusively for thyself. Thou shall not do charlas, tutor in English, nor write assignment plans. It is a day for thee, and no one can take that away; nor thy host-family, thy socios, thy neighbor, nor the doe-eyed children.

#5--Call thy mother and thy father, and let them know thou art alive. 

#6--Thou shall not kill all thy free time by sitting in thy room. Thou must integrate into thy community.

#7--Thou should not commit adultery nor date within site. If thou wants to get down, thou must get out of town.

#8-- Thou shall not steal-away from site without permission.

#9-- Thou shall not bear false witness on thy fellow volunteer, nor tattletale, nor post incriminating photos on thy facebook.

#10--Thou shall not covet thy fellow volunteer's Peace Corps experience; thy fellow's house, thy fellow's host family, thy fellow's socio, thy fellow's projects, thy fellow's site. Everyone's experience is different, and thou shall not judge thyself and thy experience to others!



  2. Thy Mum and Dad liketh thy blog. Mum wishes to add #11-Call thy parents often!