Life in Paraguay

Just enjoy it all. Paraguayans are some of the nicest people you'll ever meet. They're always willing to open up their doors and let you in, even if there's no room.Hannah from WI, Year Program
It was really hard for me to adjust to their view of time. It's all very laidback, so 10 minutes could really mean 20. It was difficult to worry about being punctual when no one really cares if you're 30 minutes late.Alexa from NY, Year Program
It's hot, but don't underestimate the winters. Bring warm clothes, just leave the ski jacket at home.Lauren from PA, Semester Program
Family is everything! And gossip is the country’s best sport, you can’t hide from it and they will talk about you no matter what, so don’t worry about it. Petra from MD, Year Program
Bring all your music and your photos of home on a thumb drive because your family will want to see them but leave the laptop and iPod at home!!! Most teenagers in Paraguay do not have PCs and do not have IPods. DO take your camera, though.Byron from OR, Year Program
The food is really heavy and they will always offer you more food, so be firm but respectful when declining an offered another piece of cake or sopa paraguaya.Petra from MD, Year Program
Don't be surprised if your host parents want to know where you’re going, with whom, at what time, what you'll be doing, and when you’re coming back. Lauren from PA, Semester Program
Try everything that is offered to you at least once. No one will be offended if you don't like something, but they might be if you don't at least try it. Ask questions all the timeCaitlin from AZ, Summer Community Service Program
The lack of privacy was most challenging for me. If I wanted to go off by myself to listen to music or write in my journal, it was seen as anti-social or disrespectful. Erinn from ME, Semester Program
Paraguayos all drink a certain tea and all have these great thermoses. As a gift bring a nice screw top thermos with a design pertaining to your home region or country. Candy is also a good gift for brothers and sisters like Skittles, Starburst, Reeses, Sour Patch Kids and marshmallows. T-shirts with sports teams or something funny written in English are really as well. Byron from OR, Year Program

Digging Deeper

Language Resources
Cultural Resources
News and Media
Movies and Documentaries
  • Landfill Harmonic (2015)
  • 7 Boxes (2012)
  • Paraguayan Hammock (2006)
  • Empty Cans (2014)
  • La Sangre y La Semila (1959)
  • Cloudy Times (2014)
  • The Mission (1986)
  • Paraguay's Painful Harvest
  • Daughters of the Forest (2016)
  • Cerro Cora (1978)
Books
  • Ada's Violin (2016)
  • Hero By Accident: Paraguayan Short Stories (2015)
  • At the Tomb of the Inflatable Pig: Travels Through Paraguay (2003)
  • The Paraguar Reader: History, Culture, Politics (2012)
  • Invisible Country (2012)
  • The News From Paraguay (2004)
  • I, the Supreme (1974)
  • Ceniza Redimida (1950)
  • The Shrinking Jungle (2012)
  • Hijo de Hombre (1996)
LGBTQ Resources (Diversity) Heritage and Ethnicity Resources (Diversity)

Language Requirements

Applicants to all programs in Paraguay are expected to enroll in an online Rosetta Stone language course and study independently prior to departure on program. The mandatory online course will be organized and monitored by AFS Paraguay who will email registration and login instructions to each student. AFS Paraguay urges each student to complete at least TWO of the five levels of the course before their arrival in Paraguay for the program. If this requirement is not fulfilled, the student may be asked to reimburse AFS Paraguay for the course fees.

Note: The links and resources listed in "Digging Deeper" have been provided to AFS by people involved with our organization, including alumni members, volunteers, etc. AFS has not reviewed the resources in their entirety and presents them "as is" for your own information. As such, the sites, publications, films, etc. do not necessarily reflect the approval of nor the views, opinions, and/or values of AFS.