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Working Abroad

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<< 8. When you arrive

9.1 Reverse culture shock

For many, returning home can be much more difficult than going out – with a job to find, home to set up, church to re-engage with, children to settle, climate to get used to, coping with the loss of what you have left behind and the difficulty of fitting back in. This has been called 'reverse culture shock'.

Be prepared for a difficult few months. Depending on the length of time away, things will have changed back home – old friends and colleagues will have moved on and are often not interested in hearing about your experiences. Both you and they will have changed. Life in the UK may well be very different from where you have been working and from what it was like when you originally left.

OSCAR has a list of resources for those returning, including courses, retreats and books. See www.oscar.org.uk/service/training/reentry.htm

You, and the family, should have a medical check and debriefing session on your return from working abroad and the agency you have worked with may well arrange this for you.

Christian Agencies offering Debriefing and Medical Checkups:

>> 9.2 Children

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