Wednesday, February 1, 2012
I had been told back in October that it was possible I would be attending a malaria boot camp in early 2012. I had been asking about it fairly regularly since I got back to Moz at the beginning of the month, but all we had been told so far was “sometime in February.” With February quickly approaching, I called our country director again on Monday and I was finally given dates! The conference will be from February 2-11 and my tickets were bought yesterday so I am officially leaving on Wednesday the 1st! I am a little intimidated—I have no idea what we will do at a conference for ten whole days. But I am really looking forward to learning everything about malaria. All I know about malaria I learned in the past month reading a book about it. Here in Peace Corps Mozambique we have never had any formal malaria activities or programs before. In the past everything we do has been heavily HIV/AIDS focused, mostly because that’s where our funding comes from. This year my job is to jumpstart and promote any and all malaria-focused activities involving PCVs, and I am starting from scratch. On the other hand, some West African Peace Corps countries have tons of experience with successful malaria programs and activities. I, representing both myself and Peace Corps Mozambique, will be the ultimate rookie at the conference, but I will be taking furious notes and plan to bring many ideas back with me.