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Author Topic: Staging Event  (Read 8052 times)

Offline beeskneesburke

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Staging Event
« on: November 08, 2013, 07:38:07 AM »
Hello!

I was hoping some current PCVs could talk about what to expect from the staging event. How long is it? What activities do we do during this time? Do we stay in a big city?  Also what does the timeline look like afterwards, do we all fly into the country together?

Thank you for your help!

Offline shawn

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Re: Staging Event
« Reply #1 on: November 08, 2013, 10:59:29 AM »
Staging is usually no more than a day or two. Depending on how far you live from the staging city, you'll either be booked to fly in the morning of staging or the night before. If you arrive in the morning, you'll have the staging sessions that day and fly out the next day. You'll all fly together and be met by PC staff at the airport in country.

The city depends on your country, but it'll be on the coast in cities like Philadelphia, Atlanta, San Francisco, etc and be run by a designated staging team.

What happens at staging various, but you'll usually fill out last minute paperwork, meet your group mates, and learn more about the Peace Corps and your host country.
PCVL - Rwanda 2010-2013
NPCA Serving Volunteer Advisory Council

Offline jlmanzak

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Re: Staging Event
« Reply #2 on: November 08, 2013, 11:12:38 AM »
Thanks for your help shawn! Is there anything you'd recommend making sure you have at staging? Any extra paperwork or things to have handy that would have been extra helpful? Do they put you in a hotel for any nights you stay, or do you have to make arrangements yourself?

Offline shawn

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Re: Staging Event
« Reply #3 on: November 08, 2013, 04:33:28 PM »
They'll put you up for all of staging and pay for your flight to the staging city, as well as provide per diem. I had a folder of all the paperwork I'd ever received from Peace Corps and brought it with. If you have any federal student loans I'd bring the proper forms with. Besides that, It's pretty relaxed with not much prep required. I'd also have your yellow WHO card handy in case they take you to get any extra shots (they made my entire group get the yellow fever shot after telling us not to get it).
PCVL - Rwanda 2010-2013
NPCA Serving Volunteer Advisory Council

Offline Marion

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Re: Staging Event
« Reply #4 on: November 09, 2013, 06:41:41 AM »
Staging is mostly to get you all together in the same place to start your journey together.   

It will be the first time you meet the people in your group that will become a family to you.  Many of the people you meet that day will be your friends for life. 

Before I had been in Philadelphia more than a few hours I went to the table where two people were getting everyone's necessary paperwork.  I filled out a few forms, handed them over, and then the lady smiled and said, "Welcome to the Peace Corps".  I will never forget it. 

Marion
RPCV, Botswana (2011-2013)

Offline the boss

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Re: Staging Event
« Reply #5 on: December 07, 2013, 06:30:24 PM »
Staging was pretty exciting.  It is the moment when you realize you are truly in the Peace Corps.  It doesn't last long and it is your first taste of how they train you in PST with a lot of breaking out in groups and other stuff you will really get tired of during the next two months.

Enjoy it.  Take hot showers, eat good food, enjoy the dependable utilities -- that is about to end.

redmaypril

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Re: Staging Event
« Reply #6 on: December 08, 2013, 09:09:14 AM »
I still vividly remember staging, although I remember being a little frustrated. The people at the staging knew very little about Niger, although they were RPCVs. However, it was fun to meet my training group and we did some cultural awareness activities and ice breakers that I still remember. The hotel was nice, the last meal was nice....Enjoy it!

Offline Jeff

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Re: Staging Event
« Reply #7 on: December 08, 2013, 11:45:16 AM »
What redmaypril said - none of our staging coordinators (no idea what they are actually called!) were RPCVs from Africa, much less our country of service.

From a 'work' standpoint, I think staging was actually a bit of a waste of time.

From a get-to-know-you're-fellow-volunteers standpoint it was a great exeperience.  Unlike what it sounds like they do now, we had a three-night/four-day staging.  A lot of cheesy (but oddly fun) ice-breakers, but also a lot of free time to hang out and get to know each other a little bit before we took of for West Africa.

I remember they gave us this workbook we had to work through where we had to think about what we expected as a PCV, both from our country and ourselves.  We also had pages on questions to ask other volunteers in our group.  They did this demonstration on what it was like to take public transport in country where they set up a couple chairs close together (I think it was about 3 rows of four chairs) and had about 20 people try to sit on them.  Actually pretty fun.

And as the boss said, it was kind of the wake-up call that I'm really doing this.

As suggested, bringing copies of any paperwork was helpful for me.
Jeff
RPCV - Ghana, 03-05
PCV - Macedonia, 15-17

Offline shawn

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Re: Staging Event
« Reply #8 on: December 09, 2013, 12:38:20 AM »
The basic, original point of staging is simply to get all of the trainees into one place, take care of any last minute legal issues, and then put you on a plane.

I think all stagings now take only a night, so its mostly show up, have lunch, meet some people, sign some papers, play some silly games, have dinner, go to bed, and then get on a plane.

Who manages the event is hit or miss, sometimes (if you're lucky) it'll be the Desk Attendant who has been to the Post before. If not, it'll be a lackey who tells you the Rwanda is the size of Texas and Arizona combined (its about the size of Mass.)

Be prepared for it to suck. But garner everything you can from it and relish in being in the States one last time.
PCVL - Rwanda 2010-2013
NPCA Serving Volunteer Advisory Council

Offline PeaceCorps1

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Re: Staging Event
« Reply #9 on: December 19, 2014, 11:38:52 PM »
Staging was a let down to me. I knew from the moment that I walked to the registration table that I was in for a lonely 2 years. Every one was in their 20s and immediately had friends. The other older volunteers seemed to think that if they hung out together then folk would think they were the 'seniors'. Guess what? You are the seniors. I was between the age groups and had no immediate camaraderie.
"If it were not for the reporters, I'd tell you the truth"', President Chester A. Arthur