September 13, 2004: Headlines: COS - Nepal: Safety and Security of Volunteers: Springfield News Leader: David and Danyel Anderson have been packing busily for their Peace Corps trip to Nepal. But recent riots against Muslims in Katmandu, the capital, after 12 Nepalese hostages were killed by Islamist militants in Iraq, led to almost a month's delay in their trip abroad, which was first scheduled for last week.

Peace Corps Online: Directory: Nepal: Peace Corps Nepal : The Peace Corps in Nepal: September 13, 2004: Headlines: COS - Nepal: Safety and Security of Volunteers: Springfield News Leader: David and Danyel Anderson have been packing busily for their Peace Corps trip to Nepal. But recent riots against Muslims in Katmandu, the capital, after 12 Nepalese hostages were killed by Islamist militants in Iraq, led to almost a month's delay in their trip abroad, which was first scheduled for last week.

By Admin1 (admin) (151.196.185.151) on Saturday, October 02, 2004 - 3:34 pm: Edit Post

David and Danyel Anderson have been packing busily for their Peace Corps trip to Nepal. But recent riots against Muslims in Katmandu, the capital, after 12 Nepalese hostages were killed by Islamist militants in Iraq, led to almost a month's delay in their trip abroad, which was first scheduled for last week.

David and Danyel Anderson have been packing busily for their Peace Corps trip to Nepal. But recent riots against Muslims in Katmandu, the capital, after 12 Nepalese hostages were killed by Islamist militants in Iraq, led to almost a month's delay in their trip abroad, which was first scheduled for last week.

David and Danyel Anderson have been packing busily for their Peace Corps trip to Nepal. But recent riots against Muslims in Katmandu, the capital, after 12 Nepalese hostages were killed by Islamist militants in Iraq, led to almost a month's delay in their trip abroad, which was first scheduled for last week.

Couple prepare for Nepal's challenges

David and Danyel Anderson have been packing busily for their Peace Corps trip to Nepal. But recent riots against Muslims in Katmandu, the capital, after 12 Nepalese hostages were killed by Islamist militants in Iraq, led to almost a month's delay in their trip abroad, which was first scheduled for last week.
Christina Dicken News-Leader
By Ryan Slight
News-Leader

Danyel Anderson searched this summer for clothing that would cover her shoulders.

She wasn't anticipating cooler weather, but an upcoming journey with her husband, David, to Nepal, where it is considered offensive for women to expose their shoulders.

"We're trying to find some clothing that is culturally sensitive," said David Anderson, who is busy packing for their 27-month trip starting Oct. 4 to the Asian country, where they will be Peace Corps volunteers.

Upon arrival, the Springfield couple will take intensive language classes in Katmandu and stay with a family there before venturing into southern Nepal. They will be among 30 Peace Corps volunteers in a country considered one of the world's poorest.

Danyel, 26, a medical technologist at Smith-Glynn-Callaway Urgent Care Laboratory, may help set up health education centers in villages. David, 25, an eighth-grade teacher and girls basketball coach at Willard Middle School who resigned this year to go to Nepal, may plan activities to keep youth out of trouble.

"I hope we can teach them things to benefit their lives without Americanizing them," Danyel Anderson said. "We in no way intend to go over there and make them live their lives the way we do here in America."

Nepal presents challenges beyond language and cultural barriers. Initially scheduled last week, the Andersons' trip was delayed until riots against Muslims in Katmandu subsided.

Authorities in Nepal on Sept. 6 lifted a five-day curfew in Katmandu imposed to end tensions over Islamist militants killing 12 Nepalese hostages in Iraq.

The curfew was ordered Sept. 1 after protesters in the predominantly Hindu nation ransacked a mosque and Muslim businesses. At least two people were killed and more than 50 wounded in clashes between protesters and police.

In addition, Maoist rebels are working to overturn the country's monarchy, which is supported by the United States.

"Peace Corps has told us that even though the Maoists have issues with their government and with America, they want Peace Corps as an organization in the country," Danyel Anderson said.

"It made us feel better that they actually delayed our departure because it made us realize Peace Corps is aware of situations and they're not going to put us in any situation that might be dangerous," she said.

They said they feel responsible for helping a less prosperous country after receiving good educations in the United States.

David is a Kickapoo High School graduate with an education degree from Southwest Baptist University.

Danyel is a Strafford High School graduate who recently completed a Southwest Missouri State University master's degree in public health.

"We live in a country that has financial support and everything has just been given to us. I think this is a chance for us to give back a little bit," David Anderson said.

The Peace Corps arranged to fly the couple any lengthy distances since Nepal's public transportation can be unreliable, Danyel Anderson said.

"Other than that, we will have a bicycle," she said.

During their stay, the Andersons will receive $113 a month from the Peace Corps more income than many Nepalese make in four months, Danyel Anderson said.

They will receive more than $12,000 upon their return to adjust to American life. Relatives will rent their Springfield home during their absence.

The couple initially thought they would head to South Africa, but arrangements fell through.

"It's harder to place married volunteers because you have to have an area that has a need for both of our (expertise)," Danyel Anderson said.

Scot Roskelley, a Peace Corps spokesman in Chicago, said the organization receives a lot of volunteers in their mid-20s like the Andersons, who wanted to serve before starting a family in Springfield.

An estimated 3,500 Peace Corps volunteers undergo a three-month training each year in foreign countries before two years of service, he said. The Peace Corps selects the country where a person will serve based on his or her talents. The organization accepts about a third of its applicants.

More than 20 southwest Missouri residents serve the Peace Corps, Roskelley said.

The corps relies on the U.S. Department of State to monitor any hostile activity overseas. The Andersons have visas to neighboring India in case of an emergency.

"They advise us at any time about what is going on in a country," Roskelley said, "and whether we need to pull out all together or pull out of a region."

Wire services contributed to this report.





When this story was posted in October 2004, this was on the front page of PCOL:


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Story Source: Springfield News Leader

This story has been posted in the following forums: : Headlines; COS - Nepal; Safety and Security of Volunteers

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