Mid-Service Training (MST)
I went through a brief period where I wasn’t sure if posting on my blog was necessary since I post A TON on Facebook, and a bit on Instagram (@morganleestoner) and I don’t want to overwhelm people, but as it turns out, people from all over the world read my blog (slight brag ;P) and since my goal is to educate people on Peace Corps and South Africa, I’m gonna keep posting 🙂
MST, aka Mid-Service Training, occurs approximately one year after swearing-in. My cohort swore-in on 30 March 2015 so our MST was 18-23 April 2016. MST also marks less than a year left of service!! Crazy.
Monday and Tuesday of MST are medical appointment days. Basically, PC requires that every volunteer get a physical and dental exam after 1 year of service, and MST is the designated time to do so. However, since I live so close to Pretoria, I had my physical and dental prior to MST (when I was in town for other things) so I didn’t have to attend those days. In fact, I was so busy with work and GRS, I didn’t even leave site (my village) until Wednesday.
Wednesday of MST was a travel day when all PCVs were transported from Pretoria (where med appointments are located) to a resort outside of PTA for the rest of the sessions.
Wednesday night, Anna from our cohort hosted a 1920’s themed Murder Mystery Party (cause that’s how we do). Surprisingly or not, I actually enjoyed hanging out with my cohort after 10 months apart.
Thursday and Friday we attended training sessions. We spent time talking about the highlights/challenges/best practices of our service thus far, we discussed diversity and resiliency, PC told us about third-year extension positions, we reviewed filling out VRFs (Volunteer Reporting Forms – they are complicated and I doubt I’ve ever filled one out correctly so this session was helpful) and how to tailor our projects to meet CHOP project framework goals, and we went over policy and procedure (again).
Saturday, when most volunteers were travelling from MST back to site, Austin, Cathy, and I travelled to VICTORIA FALLS to celebrate my birthday!! If you want to read about, click here!
I can’t believe I am 24 and over halfway done with my Peace Corps service!
Thank you for coming on this journey with me