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close this bookAppropriate Community Technology - A Training Manual (Peace Corps; 1982; 685 pages)
View the documentThe Farallones Institute Rural Center
View the documentCHP International, INC.
View the documentPreface
View the documentAcknowledgments
View the documentIntroduction
close this folderPhase I: Introduction to training
View the documentPhase I Calendar
View the documentSession 1. Sharing perceptions of appropriate technology: an ice breaker
View the documentSession 2. Defining expectations of the appropriate community technology training program
View the documentSession 3. Group resource assessment
View the documentSession 4. Appropriate educational and learning processes part 1: non-formal education (nfe) and international community development work
View the documentSession 4. Appropriate educational and learning processes part 2: adult learning theory and how it is used in this training program
View the documentSession 5. Development of facilitation skills criteria
View the documentSession 6. Cross-cultural awareness and communication
View the documentSession 7. Hollow square
View the documentSession 8. Health in a cross-cultural context
View the documentSession 9. Community resource investigation
View the documentSession 10. An exercise in problem solving: formulating a plan for well-being
View the documentSession 11. Communication and listening skills
View the documentSession 12. Construction of earthen block molds: a focus on group dynamics
View the documentSession 13. Construction of earthen blocks
View the documentSession 14. Global energy issues
View the documentSession 15. Introduction to the evaluation process
View the documentSession 16. Evaluation and integration of training themes
Open this folder and view contentsPhase II: Earthen construction and fuel-saving cookstoves
Open this folder and view contentsPhase III: Pedal/treadle power
Open this folder and view contentsPhase IV: Solar water heaters
Open this folder and view contentsPhase V: Solar agricultural dryers
Open this folder and view contentsPhase VI: Concluding the program: The energy fair
Open this folder and view contentsAppendices

Session 10. An exercise in problem solving: formulating a plan for well-being

Total time:

2 hours


* To develop a comprehensive plan to maintain and restore well-being during training and future Peace Corps service
* To resolve a current concern or problem using the OFPISA model


* Ingalls, John, Andragogy, pp. 38-45 & 145-146
* Pfeiffer, John and J. Jones, A Handbook of Structured Experiences for Human Relations - Training
* Samuels and Bennett, The Well Body Book, pp. 1-15 & 105-112
* Werner, David, Where There is No Doctor, pp. 233-244 & 140-216
* Attachment I-10-A, "The OFPISA ProblemSolving Model"
* Attachment 1-10-B, "Problem-Solving Worksheet"


Newsprint, felt-tip pens, paper, pens, session objectives written on newsprint and posted


Step 1. (5 minutes)
Review the objectives and present the OFPISA problem-solving model. Distribute Attachment 1-8-A to be read.

Step 2. (15 minutes)
Ask participants to suggest a sample concern common to the training group (e.g., loneliness, sickness, food, not enough research time). Then, following the OFPISA format, encourage them to work through the problem as you note information about it on the newsprint or board.

Step 3. (60 minutes)
Distribute the problemsolving worksheets, Attachment 1-8-A, and have participants practice using the OFPISA model to identify and attempt to resolve a current concern or problem that relates to personal well-being.

Trainer Notes

Explain that it is important for participants to work in pairs in order to effectively address one another's concerns.

Step 4. (15 minutes)
Meet with the entire group and elicit observations and questions about the activity and the problem-solving model.

Step 5. (15 minutes)
Based on the OFPISA format, have participants develop a comprehensive plan for well-being that will be of use during training and Peace Corps service. Explain that the plan is to be completed as a homework assignment sometime before mid-program.

Trainer Notes

* Explain that the plan is a method for putting into practice material which will be discussed in health and nutrition sessions during the first half of the program and that such a plan provides an opportunity to identify and clarify one's definition of and approach to well-being.

* It is important to stress that the plan may take many forms (e.g., a graphic flow chart, a written report, a cassette tape, etc.).

* The plan should include:

1. mental, physical and emotional components
2. potential problems or concerns that must be resolved for improved health
3. ways in which specific health problems will be resolved (e.g., treat alone, use an indigenous practitioner, go to a doctor)

* Questions to be answered:

1. What are the symptoms of illness?
2. What are the characteristics of good health?
3. What lifestyle changes are necessary to promote better health?
4. What illnesses or diseases are likely during training or Peace Corps service?

Step 6. (5 minutes)
Assign the readings in Werner (pp. 140-216 and 233-244) and in Samuels and Bennett (pp. 1-15 and 105-112) as resource material for the plan development.

Step 7. (5 minutes)
Discuss any questions concerning the exercise and set a date (prior to mid-program) for reviewing the plans.


Buckminster Fuller said that a problem well stated is a problem solved. In order to state a problem completely and well, as much relevant information as possible must be gathered. The following model is designed to assist in the definition of the problem, the examination of all its aspects and an acceptable resolution to the conflicts and challenges presented by it.

In the model, first the original problem is stated. This may also be a goal, objective or issue.

Then, the factors relating to the problem are listed. The problem may be defined as a temporary equilibrium between factors that move toward change ant those that restrain it. In order to solve the problem, the equilibrium or tension must be broken. The equilibrium may be likened to a force field: the problem is held static between opposing forces that push and pull. All factors are listed that have any bearing on the problem. One list notes the driving forces toward resolution and another notes factors that serve as restraining forces. The journalistic "w's" are useful in identifying the factors: who, what, why, where, when and how.

The problem redefined or restated is considered next. After all the factors both for and against resolution are identified, the real problem may emerge. This may be a simple restatement of the original problem or it may be another problem entirely, based on new information provided by examining the various factors.

Many and different ideas are generated by brainstorming: all ideas, suggestions and possible solutions are listed without discriminating among them. These serve to either increase the forces driving towards resolution or decrease the restraining forces. The brainstormed list may be comprised of logical, sensible ideas as well as those that seem crazy or not at all feasible. It should be remembered that most of the important or major inventions of the world had their origin in a "strange" idea that somehow worked' Therefore, judgment should be suspended during this phase and all creative suggestions listed, regardless of their initial appearance.

To devise a solution to the problem, a selection and comparison of the various ideas are made, thereby generating concrete and potentially viable solutions.

Each potential solution is evaluated to determine its acceptance by those affected by it. If the solution is not acceptable, another solution must be tried. If it is viable, then it is implemented and the problem has begun to be resolved.

One way of remembering this model is to term it the OFPISA (as in the leaning tower):

O - Original problem
F - Factors
P - Problem redefined
I - Ideas
S - Solutions
A - Acceptance

From CHP International, Inc., Staff Training Materials. 707B Davis Rd., Elgin, IL 60120)


O - Original Problem
F - Factors: Driving Forces Restraining Forces
P - Problem Restatement
I - Ideas
S - Solution
A - Acceptance

From CHP International, Inc., Staff Training Materials. 707B Davis Rd., Elgin, IL 60120)

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