Portia’s Peace Corps Experience in Ecuador By Portia Boykin
Even though this year will be the 10 year anniversary of the start of my Peace Corps journey, I still would consider it as a vivid recent memory. I often find a way to incorporate my Peace Corps experience in Ecuador into my daily life. The experiences that I shared with the people there remains one of the top three experiences of my life! From working as a public health advocate to teaching English as a Second Language, working with host country nationals trained me to be more resilient under the most difficult circumstances. They also taught me how to practice the sweetest most sincere act of grace to unfamiliar neighbors just when they needed it the most. I was fortunate enough to be assigned to work with La Cruz Roja Ecuatoriana (Ecuadorian Red Cross) in the city of Ibarra where we did any and everything under the sun to act as stewards to our community. I was also fortunate enough to live with the most wonderful host mother in all the land who was the essence of a family woman. I also had an unofficial host family that welcomed me with open arms in the heart of Valle de Chota, a small Afro-Ecuadorian village alongside the Pan American highway. My Peace Corps experience was phenomenal and I would encourage anyone who is able to set their eyes on visiting and living in a foreign country. Try Ecuador first then work your way around the world!