Image description: A Peace Corps Volunteer poses with her students under an HIV/AIDS mural they painted at their school in Peru.
Photo by the Peace Corps
An elder woman in Panama paints a Peace Corps Volunteer with a temporary paint from the juices of a fruit called Jagua.
Peace Corps Volunteer Allegra Panetto of Haworth, N.J., is working with a local health center in the eastern part of Malawi to power electricity in several of the health center’s rooms using solar energy. A portion of the funds for the project were raised through the Peace Corps Partnership Program (PCPP) that helps fund Peace Corps Volunteer community projects worldwide.
"Each month, more than 60 infants are delivered at the health center. Half of these infants are delivered in the middle of the night, and because it only has lights in the labor ward and out-patient room, mothers’ pre-and post-delivery must wait in a room without electricity,” said Panetto, a Columbia University graduate. “Installing solar energy at the health center will better the lives of both the patients and staff.”
The health center serves more than 17,000 people in 35 villages near the shores of Lake Malawi. Prior to installing the solar panels in the health clinic, the staff will renovate the in-patient room and staff housing to prepare for the installation. In 2009, solar electricity was already installed in the out-patient room and labor ward.
"The sun’s power is the sustaining forces behind this project,” said Panetto, who has been working as a health Volunteer in Malawi since July 2010. “The area is a very hot and sunny, even during rainy season. The acquisition of electricity to the in-patient dorm will increase the capacity of patient attendants, nurses, and family members to care for patients – expectant or new mothers, or those suffering from life-threatening diseases.”
In order to receive funding through the PCPP, a community must make a 25 percent contribution to the total project cost and outline success indicators for the individual projects. This helps ensure community ownership and a greater chance of long-term sustainability.
As an education Volunteer in southwestern Uganda, I have the opportunity to work on various secondary projects with local primary schools. In one nearby school, I facilitated a drama club where children could have the opportunity to express themselves, develop self confidence, and develop relationships with others. We also worked to create dramas based on things in their lives that mattered to them. This photo was taken in July 2011, as the children were processing in for their end of term performance. They performed their dramas with great pride that day, and one can see this pride on their faces as they walk in from their school’s front gate.
Peace Corps Education Volunteer Emily Kjesbo-Johnson
Dormition Cathedral in Poltava, Ukraine
Jumping Rope - Morocco, 2010
As many of you know, in addition to teaching English as a Peace Corps Volunteer, I am also involved in youth development work in my community, with a focus on healthy lifestyles. In that vein, my Ukrainian counterparts and I have organized and submitted a grant proposal with the intent of providing the local youth sports center with much needed equipment (from sports equipment to heating units.) Please take a look at the project, and if you’re able to, donate! Even if you’re not personally able to donate to the project, please forward the information to anyone and everyone you think would be interested in being part of this undertaking!
(PS I will be promoting this project endlessly until it’s funded, so be prepared!!)
Two young girls reading in the Kato resource center library - Guyana, 2010
The University of Colorado Boulder, The George Washington University, and the University of Mary Washington lead our 2012 rankings of the top Peace Corps Volunteer producing colleges and universities. Each of the universities held the premier ranking for the large, medium, and small in 2011.
Director Williams announced the top volunteer-producing colleges and universities at the University of Colorado Boulder, which outpaced other large universities with 112 undergraduate alumni currently serving as Peace Corps Volunteers overseas. In the medium school category, The George Washington University ranks number one for the fourth consecutive year, with 78 undergraduate alumni serving overseas. And, for the second year in a row, the University of Mary Washington topped the small school category, with 29 undergraduate alumni currently serving as Volunteers.
The University of Florida holds the top spot in the graduate school category this year with 30 currently serving Volunteers holding master’s degrees from the school. It was in second place last year. Historically, the University of California, Berkeley maintains the number one all-time rank, with 3,497 Peace Corps Volunteer alumni.
Traditional dancers performed for trainees in South Africa in January 2011. The dance involved women in traditional dress stomping, clapping and parading around a set of traditional drums that were providing the music for the dance.
Peace Corps HIV/AIDS Volunteer Andrew Prince
Sixteen Peace Corps Volunteers in the Dominican Republic are producing and filming a telenovela (soap opera) entitled, “Me Toca a Mi” (It’s my turn) with more than 25 local youth that will be used in classrooms, educational centers, and youth clubs throughout the country. The telenovela is designed to teach life skills and HIV/AIDS prevention and awareness.
Peace Corps Volunteers serving in Kenya observed that the deaf community gravely lacked resources. Written materials focusing on Kenyan Sign Language (KSL) were scarce to non-existent. Parents of deaf children often did not have knowledge of KSL and had difficulty communication their own children.
In an effort to assist the deaf community, Volunteers created posters like this one and, after months of hard work during their spare time, designed an interactive CD-ROM about Kenyan Sign Language. You can read more about it and learn a little more KSL here!
Got 30 seconds to spare? Check out the short version of our TV PSA!