© 2015 Lindsay Cope

Site transfer

Sadly, due to circumstances out of my control, I recently packed up my belongings in Pandan, Antique. Surprisingly, many volunteers experience a site transfer during their service due to safety and security concerns.  I am okay, I have suffered no physical harm or faced danger due to political conditions at my site.  I simply suffered a rare series of events at my site that came about because of my novelty as a single, foreign female, living alone in the rural provinces of the Philippines.

Surely, this announcement raises some concern and wonder.  However, I choose to be discrete about the causes for my transfer, as the behavior that got me here was disturbing.Image result for luzonImage result for calatagan batangas map

On the bright side, I get to see another part of the Philippines!  My next site is Calatagan, Batangas south of Manila on Luzon.  From what I understand, Calatagan is much different than Pandan in regard to having successful CRM programming.  Peace Corps assured me that they wanted to help me find success in the second year, and chose a place that wanted a volunteer and had defined deliverables that can be achieved in a year.

The downside of the transfer, of course, was saying goodbye to the few dear friends I made in Pandan.  My neighbors, the Castillos, were perhaps the hardest to say goodbye to as I saw them on a daily basis, shared food and laughter with them often, and became very close with the children Ashley, Hamsa, and Lani.

I have spent a great amount of time in Manila awaiting transfer.  Undoubtedly, this is the WORST time to have a transfer because staff is very busy with new volunteers and out-going COS-ing volunteers.  I have been able to spend some extra time with some of my friends who COS-ed (Close of Service) yesterday and was fortunate to meet a handful of volunteers from the new batch.

This transition has certainly had its ups and downs, but I am ready to move on and make the best of the next 12 months.


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