Returned Peace Corps Volunteer Collection
Candice "Candy" Diehl Wiggum served as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Macedonia from September 2009 to December 2012 in a business development program. After retiring from a career as a mental health counselor, Wiggum entered training in Macedonia where she learned the Albanian and Macedonian languages and about local non-governmental organizations (NGOs), and grew close to her host family. In her assigned city of Gostivar, in Western Macedonia, and with her counterpart Lulzim, Wiggum worked with sheep breeders, secured grants, facilitated an annual 5K run, organized sheep festivals, and got involved with rural tourism. She discusses many cultural distinctions, including how local culture impacted business (for example, socializing for 60 minutes before a two-minute business transaction). Wiggum served a third year as a volunteer leader, splitting time between the Peace Corps office in Skopje and continued rural development activities in Gostivar. She continues to serve in her local New Jersey community in multiple ways, and frequently advocates for over-50s becoming Peace Corps volunteers. Please note: Due to a technical problem, the last portion of the interview had to be repeated. Interviewed and recorded by Patricia Wand, November 5 and 30, 2018. 2 digital audio files (web streaming files combined into 1 file).