“Make Love, Not War,” a poem by Ada Jo Mann (Chad)

 

Chad

Chad

Make Love, Not War

by Ada Jo Mann (Chad 1967–69)

We joined the Peace Corps to keep my new husband
From going to War.
We flew to the heart of darkest Africa
And changed our lives.

We learned the language of the village
And wrote it down.
We made love under a gauzy net
And changed our lives.

We drew our water from the police yard spigot
And kept it cold.
We took drugs against Malaria and for amusement
And changed our lives.

We taught about clean water and latrines
To children and chiefs.
We wrote letters and made tapes
and changed our lives.

We made good friends from around the globe
And shared their joy.
We packed our bags with memories that
Had changed our lives.

In her retirement, RPCV Ada Jo Mann is writing poetry and participates in a Poetry Circle at Politics and Prose bookstore in Washington, D.CIn Chad, Ada Jo Mann was a health Volunteer. She later worked at Peace Corps headquarters in the Program and Training Support Section. In 1983 she co-created, and was the first Director of, the Small Project Assistance Program (SPA), a USAID-funded program that provides small grants to Peace Corps Volunteers and their counterparts. The program has endured for 30+ years and is still going strong. She spent many years as a USAID contractor and grantee and is best known for introducing a strength-based approach to change called Appreciative Inquiry to NGOS around the world. She is a co-author of  Positive Family Dynamics.

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  • Isn’t it interesting how Ada Jo and so many who joined the Peace Corps may have made the choice for a simple reason — like avoiding service in the Viet Nam war and then changed the course of their lives. Lovely

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