Science Fair Exposition Period
A Girls’ Empowerment Conference in Tanzania where participants learned about life skills, gender issues, sex positivity, and women’s health.
In her first two years while living in Amparafaravola which is located in the Lac Alaotra region of Madagascar, Peace Corps Volunteer Teena Curry worked with a youth group to paint a mural depicting the malaria transmission cycle and the importance of sustained LLIN use. By the end of the event, 15 members of the youth group were trained in explaining the importance of LLIN use and how to properly care for mosquito nets and one or two performed sensitizations to community members while the others painted. The painting of the mural was combined with other community education events during the week of World Malaria Day including two neem cream demonstrations and wall of fame project that featured photos of families who hung their net correctly and self-reported having slept under it every night. Other secondary projects during her first two years of service included preparing the curriculum for a behavior change communication training for 16 community health workers which included techniques for behavior change messages related to malaria prevention activities.
That’s just a few things that Teena did as a PCV from 2010 – 2012, she extended her service until October 2013. Read more about her here!
During her service, Peace Corps Volunteer Rachael Saler taught Filipino women to crochet discarded plastic bags into colorful handbags and change purses as a way to engage local communities in business ventures, and teach environmental awareness and recycling. Since the Bag-O Plastic project launched in August 2010, more than 100 women from Bago City in the Philippines have sold 200 bags, earning 63,000 pesos (about $1,500).
For each bag that is sold, the woman who crocheted it receives 80 percent of the earnings. The other 20 percent goes toward the purchasing of zipper, runners, tags, etc. Each woman collects, segregates and washes plastic bags to be crocheted and sold. Women have also begun exchanging plastic bags for rice with other merchants and started plastic-bag collection bins in local commercial areas.
Rachael, who holds a master’s degree from Columbia University and a bachelor’s from Syracuse University, credits her mother for the Bag-O Plastic idea. When her parents visited in 2009, Saler’s mother told her to consider crocheting recycled plastic bags into handbags. Rachael was so inspired by the project she extended her Peace Corps service for a third year to continue it. She completed her Peace Corps service in December 2011.
"Being in the Peace Corps was one of the best things I could have done to prepare for becoming an entrepreneur, especially a social entrepreneur. Successful Volunteers are, in many ways, entrepreneurs: You learn how to do a lot with few resources, how to jump into a vague situation and create change, how to recognize opportunities, and how to build something out of nothing. I learned firsthand how powerful business can be in creating social change for women."- Returned Peace Corps Volunteer Siiri Morley, executive director of Prosperity Catalyst, who launched a program in Haiti that provides direct support, mentorship, and training to women as they start candle-making businesses
Managing inventory with SMS for a micro-enterprise based in rural Ecuador. Teaching business to students with a game. Helping groups with limited resources organize and meet. Notifications for new deliveries and stock outs of essential medicines at public clinics and hospitals to patients.
These are just a few of the ideas in the featured problem set for the Peace Corps Innovation Challenge that culminates this weekend at the Random Hacks of Kindness Global Hackathon! Choose a Peace Corps problem statement to champion and sign up to participate now http://1.usa.gov/19jCwuf
Peace Corps Volunteer Greg Plimpton is trying to preserve local culture by helping to protect an ancient burial site near his Peruvian village. Plimpton, known by his community as “Goyo,” has been raising awareness around the importance of the site since July 2012. Now, he is working with fellow Peace Corps Volunteers, the Peruvian government and Stanford University archeologists to orchestrate an archeological dig and build a museum and visitor center adjacent to the site.
We’re proud to announce that we will begin accepting applications from same-sex domestic partners who want to serve together as Volunteers overseas!
Same-sex couples may begin the application process starting Monday, June 3.
The photograph shows the mothers and children cheering with the fresh glasses of soy milk we just made. Malnutrition is a tremendous problem among the people here, most of whom are of Lencan descent, one of the indigenous populations of Honduras. My coordinating NGO, World Vision (counterpart at far left of photograph) and I work with the women to find local and nutritious foods they can make for themselves and their families. Soy, one of these local products, only costs 10 Lempiras ($.53) a pound, and is therefore more cost effective than other products, mainly meats, with the same protein content. We begin every class with a charla (presentation) over the importance of nutrition and different nutritional elements available in local foods and then cook a few different types of food from local ingredients, soy milk and soy chorizo being examples.
- Peace Corps Health Volunteer Lauren Roberts
“When a student sees a postcard sent from a faraway place and realizes it’s addressed to them, it sparks an enthusiasm for learning English that the textbooks don’t match. Even my least motivated students will call me aside to help them decipher new words and phrases.”
- Peace Corps Volunteer Matthew Borden, who is teaching students in his Indonesian community English with the help of postcards through a project he calls Postcards to Java