My first week of work

My first week of work is now officially behind me! During this process of coming to Moldova, moving in with our training host families, and then to our permanent sites, I can’t help but wonder at how quickly we’re able to develop new routines. I’ve been here a week, but it actually feels like longer. Not sure if that is good or bad, both, or neither, but one thing is definite: we are adaptable.

Like I’ve mentioned in previous posts, I’m working with the strategic planning department of the Central Regional Development Agency. Starting out, my hours there are the basic 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday. That may change if I get involved with other community projects in the future. Currently, my assigned partner at the organization is on vacation, so I’m working on several long-term projects until she gets back and things pick up.

The first of those projects is working on translating the organization’s website into English with my site mate Luma (the other volunteer assigned to Ialoveni and the Agency). That, in and of itself, is quite the animal. Translating is tough and draining. So I’ll work on that for a few hours and then take a break to do something else. The fantastic part is, once you understand what is being said, it’s a great way to learn about the Agency and how they function.

The second project I’m working on is comparing strategic planning documents/processes from the States to those in Moldova—or, more specifically, at the Agency. Also quite a hefty project, and so I’m trying to tackle it in pieces. I’m also trying to fit in some general organizational analysis. But it should be an interesting analysis overall. I’m looking forward to putting together the final product.

Lastly, my partner asked me if I would be interested in tutoring some students in English, so I’m doing that three times per week just for the month of August. It started with two teenage girls (twin sisters) who are leaving to study in Romania in early September, but last time I had five students total (a friend of the girls, one of my colleagues, and a sibling of one of my colleagues at the Agency). It’s been interesting to plan English lessons, and a lot more time consuming than I expected. But the girls seem to be making good progress. I just hope I can keep it interesting and help motivate them!

Other than that, life seems pretty normal.  There are a few things that have changed: I live with two young girls now, I bathe less, I use an outhouse, and I walk down a dirt road to work, but those are just minor adjustments.

Our next “volunteer goals” are to introduce ourselves to leaders in the community. That means the mayor, the school director (principal), and probably law enforcement.

Here’s to another week!

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