Yai  Gong, my 104 year old grandmother in the host family I lived with in  Northeast Thailand, is pleased. She speaks only “Issan’” and I barely  speak Thai. Her days consisted of sorting chili, making sweep sticks and  chewing beetle nuts. No spoken communication happened by we shared  watermelon and everyday she would ask about my wonderful teeth. One day I  polished my nails and decided to pamper her too. Soaking her hands,  putting lotion on them and finally a pale pink color. All the time she  was very interested what was happening as I jabbered on in English, Thai  and Lao. Finally, a small, sweet smile came to her face. Cultural  exchange in a manicure.

Peace Corps Education Volunteer Linda Prinsen 

Yai Gong, my 104 year old grandmother in the host family I lived with in Northeast Thailand, is pleased. She speaks only “Issan’” and I barely speak Thai. Her days consisted of sorting chili, making sweep sticks and chewing beetle nuts. No spoken communication happened by we shared watermelon and everyday she would ask about my wonderful teeth. One day I polished my nails and decided to pamper her too. Soaking her hands, putting lotion on them and finally a pale pink color. All the time she was very interested what was happening as I jabbered on in English, Thai and Lao. Finally, a small, sweet smile came to her face. Cultural exchange in a manicure.

Peace Corps Education Volunteer Linda Prinsen 

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The children in my village have taken me in at  their big sister, calling me “kakak” rather than my actual name. It’s  heart-warming. They love to take me to the sugarcane fields that  surround our village. They run with knifes, and it makes me nervous, but  it’s the norm here. Children run free here. I love this photograph  because I actually let Sylvie, a 9-year old with very sticky fingers  from the sugarcane juices, use my Canon SLR to take this. Whenever she  sees this photo, she proudly says “aku aku” or “mine mine”. 

Peace Corps Education Volunteer Elle Chang

The children in my village have taken me in at their big sister, calling me “kakak” rather than my actual name. It’s heart-warming. They love to take me to the sugarcane fields that surround our village. They run with knifes, and it makes me nervous, but it’s the norm here. Children run free here. I love this photograph because I actually let Sylvie, a 9-year old with very sticky fingers from the sugarcane juices, use my Canon SLR to take this. Whenever she sees this photo, she proudly says “aku aku” or “mine mine”. 

Peace Corps Education Volunteer Elle Chang

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This photo was taken in a community in Nicaragua during the month of May in 2011. As a maternal and child health Volunteer in El Jícaro, I assisted the doctors that day with collecting HIV tests. We ate lunch at a woman’s house, and she had five children, all very close in age. Her home was made of adobe, and she cooked everything over an open flame. The kids ran around barefoot and naked, except for this little girl who was in a pink, ruffly dress. One of the doctors had given her a piece of candy, and she seemed to treasure the candy more than anything. She didn’t want to eat it; she only wanted to hold it in her tiny hands! I titled this photo “Chigüina” because this word is what the people in the campo of Nicaragua use when they’re children.
- Peace Corps Health Volunteer Natalie Woodrum 

This photo was taken in a community in Nicaragua during the month of May in 2011. As a maternal and child health Volunteer in El Jícaro, I assisted the doctors that day with collecting HIV tests. We ate lunch at a woman’s house, and she had five children, all very close in age. Her home was made of adobe, and she cooked everything over an open flame. The kids ran around barefoot and naked, except for this little girl who was in a pink, ruffly dress. One of the doctors had given her a piece of candy, and she seemed to treasure the candy more than anything. She didn’t want to eat it; she only wanted to hold it in her tiny hands! I titled this photo “Chigüina” because this word is what the people in the campo of Nicaragua use when they’re children.

- Peace Corps Health Volunteer Natalie Woodrum 

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I ate fried Mopane (Mopani) worms for the first time here in South Africa. Well, they are not actually worms, they’re caterpillars. So, I guess you can say that I’m officially an insectivore now. Mopani worms are a local delicacy especially for the Shangaan people. Sometimes they are fried and other times they are boiled. People eat them here like potato chips or popcorn. Eventually, if these creatures are allowed to grow, they will become a beautiful Emperor moth.

- Peace Corps Education Volunteer Robin Al-haddad 

I ate fried Mopane (Mopani) worms for the first time here in South Africa. Well, they are not actually worms, they’re caterpillars. So, I guess you can say that I’m officially an insectivore now. Mopani worms are a local delicacy especially for the Shangaan people. Sometimes they are fried and other times they are boiled. People eat them here like potato chips or popcorn. Eventually, if these creatures are allowed to grow, they will become a beautiful Emperor moth.

- Peace Corps Education Volunteer Robin Al-haddad 

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