Projects in Rwanda
Maternal and Child Health Volunteers with Peace Corps Rwanda’s First 1,000 Days Health project work on the Government of Rwanda's (GOR) priorities and approaches to maternal and child health. Volunteers live at the village level, working alongside community partners to apply nutrition, sanitation, food security and general public health principles. They work primarily with the Community Health Center. They also conduct public health education work in cooperating schools. The primary goal of the Volunteers is to identify and provide support to pregnant women and mothers/young children. With their Rwandan colleagues, they follow them over time to make sure that they are supported in their efforts to stay healthy, have healthy/safe births, and to promote the optimal physical development of their children in accordance with the Government of Rwanda’s First 1000 Days priorities.
In late 2009, Peace Corps Rwanda added an education program. The Ministry of Education has asked the Peace Corps to be a part of their efforts to enhance English proficiency throughout the school system. Peace Corps Rwanda is among education stakeholders that are working on the dual goals of classroom instruction for primary and secondary school students and building capacity of teachers to speak and teach in English. Education stakeholders have opportunities to collaborate with local education and community leaders who are extremely motivated to find ways to adequately utilize locally available instructional resources that have potential to improve the quality of English language instruction.
Peace Corps Volunteer teachers in Rwanda are expected to participate in Peace Corps’ newly-developed TEFL training program which allows them to earn a Peace Corps TEFL Certificate upon successful completion of program requirements. This program provides 120 hours of standardized training and practice teaching along with two years of supervised teaching experience framed through quarterly online learning events and face-to-face workshops facilitated by certified post staff. The trainings are designed to respond to the goals of the Peace Corps Rwanda’s TEFL and teacher support project including building teacher capacities through teacher communities of practice, improving student achievement in English and other subjects, and encouraging community engagement in student learning and school improvement.
Applicants who are not motivated to earn the TEFL Certificate should strongly consider participation in TEFL countries that do not offer the TEFL Certificate. Preference first goes to applicants who are interested in attaining a TEFL certificate.
Peace Corps Volunteer teachers primarily work with primary schools (the American equivalent of 4th, 5th and 6th grade levels) and secondary schools (the American equivalent of 7th, 8th and 9th grade levels) to teach English as a foreign language. In addition to teaching and capacity building, Volunteers also work with clubs at their schools to address study skills, mentoring, library and ICT development, and youth life skills.