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Charlie,

I wish you great success! I'm not gay myself, but had the pleasure of serving with gay PCVs. For some it was difficult to close off such a large part of who they were (they made the choice to remain closeted while in service) and I can't say how they ultimately felt about their experience, but I knew one staffer that stayed for years. Everybody draws their own rewards, and nobody can tell you what those rewards will be.

The arduous Peace Corps application process is great at weeding people out. If you can get through it, there's a very good chance that you will be an excellent Volunteer. If you think about it from their perspective, it becomes obvious. Why spend a lot of time on somebody, pay for a plane ticket, train them and feed them for three months, and then have them turn around and come home?

PCVs are a very supportive group - everybody's in it together, strangers in a strange land. Your shared time together forges lifetime bonds, as nobody at home will ever truly understand the intensely personal experience that you went through. If you can learn to use that support it will help greatly - the PCVs I saw who opted to end their service early were the ones who had turned inwards, who didn't reach out for or accept help. Help is always there when you need it, but sometimes it takes a little looking.

If you ever have any questions, or are looking for another perspective, you can ALWAYS email me. I think you'll make a fabulous Volunteer.

Best of Luck,

HomeMoaner
RPCV Zimbabwe
'95-'96 Science/Math/Art teacher, Malungudzi Secondary School, Beitbridge
'97 Peace Corps Volunteer Leader, Harare
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