Monthly Archives: September 2014

Peace Corps continues to fumble. Ignore their email

My Community Classroom project has been completely funded.  Thank you again for your generous donations.  Peace Corps sent out another automated message that you should just ignore.  Again, I am embarrassed and so very sorry to inconvenience anyone.  Please email me directly if I can answer any questions.

Sheesh…I did not realize organizational development work would include teaching Peace Corps some technical skills and some basic manners.



New friends in Valbona

photo 5

This is Catherine. She used to own a bookstore in NYC. She came to Albania five years ago, went home to sell her store and has lived here every since. She gets why I am here too!

photo 1 (13)

Catherine and Sallum. He is 15 and we are on his mountain helping mark trails and place signs. Notice the cows up behind them? No matter how high we hike there are always a few cows grazing just above.

photo 2 (11) photo 4 (4)

I went hiking as I wait on Peace Corps Headquarters

September is just the best month of the year to hike.  Bugs are gone, snow has not arrived, nights are cool and days are no longer blistering hot.  I headed up to the Albanian Alps last week.  Three furgons, a boat ride and another furgon got my to Valbona, Albania.  Check out for particulars.  What a glorious place.


photo 4 (3)

one of the better trails

photo 1 (12) photo 1 (16)photo 3 (9)photo 1 (14)

Thank you

Dear Donors,

I am embarrassed to say that I am not entirely sure what Peace Corps is doing.  I donated $17 to the Community Classroom project just so I would know what this looks like from your side.  Peace Corps took 8 days to respond with an automated email thanking me for my donation.  Eight days??

The project web page has been removed which leads me to believe that you have graciously donated the full amount of the project.  However, I can not get confirmation from them nor can I get names to thank you each individually.  Please know that I am most grateful for your support and intend to thank you each when I get full information.

If Peace Corps was one of my children they would have thanked you promptly for your generous gift.  While I am supposed to be here to build capacity among Albanians.  I have done a needs assessment and identified an opportunity for capacity building among Peace Corps.  This can be a secondary project I will add to my monthly report.

Community Classroom: A place for women

Peace Corps Partnership Program has sent out emails inviting my friends and family to donate to my Community Classroom project.  (If you have not gotten an email please let me know as I probably entered your address wrong.) The Pogradec municipality has donated the actual room,  the labor and some tables.  Donations through the Partner Grant will buy supplies for cleaning and painting the room, repairing the electrical system, installing heat, repairing some plaster and purchase of 12 folding chairs.

I considered calling this space a women’s center or a community center but the former tends to draw criticism and the latter would just fill with old men.  A community classroom is much less threatening to husbands, fathers and brothers. 

Please help me make Albania just a bit better and safer for women > This grant’s webpage can be viewed by going to and searching by my last name, Scott.