"I was visiting Mongolian friends at Tsgaan Sar, the celebration of the lunar new year. Everyone gets dressed up in their best—and these two boys were no exception. The expressions on their faces are so clear—confidence on the face of the boy on the left and uncertainty and timidness on the face of the little boy on the right."
- Peace Corps Business Development Volunteer Judy Gates
I had just gotten back home to site from being in the city for two weeks of intensive in-service training. I was nervous about returning to site, returning to my normal routine, the seclusion, the intense cultural differences that make living in a village and city so vastly different. The small children always seem to add color and excitement to life. Upon arriving back home from school, there was a group waiting anxiously for me to come back, it was one of the best feelings. I have never had so much fun playing “Go Fish”, a new game for them. They made the transition much easier.
- Peace Corps Education Volunteer Elle Chang, Indonesia
A Returned Peace Corps Volunteer who served in Cameroon comes back to visit her village a decade later.
"My family in the U.S. sent me a care package full of sugar cookies, sprinkles, and icing so I invited my friends and neighbors in Ecuador over to decorate some traditional American Christmas cookies. This photo shows my 8-year-old host niece Roxana enjoying sharing in one of my own family traditions." - Peace Corps Environment Volunteer Laurel Smith
"I arrived at site in mid December and was invited to an office Christmas Lunch. I accepted the invitation but the "lunch" was really a dinner and a huge party at a local restaurant. The night included dancing and singing by all. As I know now as typical in Macedonia - a group of musicians showed up playing various instruments and I captured this photo with the musicians and one of my colleagues at the city hall." - Peace Corps Community Development Karen Schaan
"These children attend one of the few government-run centers in Honduras catering to families with severe economic hardships, and children of working mothers. Just before Christmas 2010, they made these decorations to bring home and spread the holiday cheer!" - Peace Corps Youth Development Volunteer Lisa Lavezzo
This is my best friend in the village dressing me in traditional Turkish costume for a wedding. It was taken in March 2010 in my Bulgarian village which is almost completely inhabited by Turkish Bulgarians.
- Peace Corps Education Volunteer Anna K. O’Neill
Students wave from the window of their Moldavian school.
I took this photo on December 19th, 2008 in Ecuador. A local boy’s mother is preparing him for the parade of the traveling child (niño viajero) through the city of Cuenca. The main parade takes place in the week before Christmas, though every surrounding parish, hamlet and even schools have their own parade of some kind. Cuenca’s is by far the largest in Ecuador, taking the better part of a day from start to finish, winding its way through the colonial cobblestone streets of the historic center. In the parades, children dress up as nativity scene figures, such as the three wise kings. There are also floats with scenes from Jesus’s life and the famous Niño Divino, a highly venerated religious figure of the baby Jesus. - Peace Corps Youth Development Volunteer Bradley Mattan
Cooking by candlelight in Liberia.
“There is a lot of good that will come out of the beekeeping project. My hope is that families in town will start to eat and buy honey instead of white sugar for the additional health benefits that honey provides. Working in a group will allow cooperative members to collaborate and exchange advice, as well as sell honey in bulk to larger organizations.”
- Peace Corps Volunteer Elizabeth Clark, who started a beekeeping cooperative with 18 local families in rural Ecuador. The honey generated by the bees will be sold to local stores and provide an income for local families. The project is funded through the Peace Corps Partnership Program (PCPP), which raises money for Peace Corps volunteer community projects.