One of the goals of the Peace Corps was to have their volunteers experience life as a member of the country to which they were assigned to. The Peace Corps instructions of 1961 stated that the housing and sanitary facilities were to be clean yet simple and that food preparation facilities were also to be provided. If other furnishings prove to be necessary volunteers would be given funds to purchase from the local market. However, the equipment was to be frugal and of local styles. This idea was new as previously missionaries and American diplomats were often assigned to live in American compounds separate from the locals. In contrast to how aid was received through special diplomatic pouches and commissaries provided the military with food and other items, volunteers were given a monthly allowance and were to sustain themselves within the local economy. The living allowances of volunteers varied from country to country, and living conditions varied considerably.
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