Archive - January 19, 2011

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The Peace Corps is Cutting Back on PCVs
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Larry Leamer (Nepal 1965-67) Comments on Sarge & ABC 20/20
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The Peace Corps & ABC 20/20 – part 1

The Peace Corps is Cutting Back on PCVs

I’ve learned late today that the Peace Corps will not be growing to 20,000, 15,000, or even 10,000 Volunteers in the near future. The word has gone forth from Director Aaron Williams to Country Directors worldwide that they have to cut back on their requests for Trainees. Because of the on-going Continuing Resolution and the subsequent budget worries, Peace Corps Headquarters is scaling back on growth plans. The Agency will level off at 9,500 Volunteers this year and depending upon whatever budget is eventually passed, the overall numbers may drop again. The Obama Administration has told all agencies to scale back their growth plans. And that means you, Peace Corps! p.s. Don’t worry, you can be assured no staff positions (especially Schedule C appointees) at HQ in Washington, D.C., will be cut! Sorry, Rajeev. You won the battle (s) but you lost the war.

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Larry Leamer (Nepal 1965-67) Comments on Sarge & ABC 20/20

 [This blog was posted this morning by RPCV writer Larry Leamer on Huffington Post website. Larry’s most recent book is  Madness Under the Royal Palms: Love and Death Behind the Gates of Palm Beach.] Sarge’s Dream When I joined the Peace Corps in 1964, Sargent Shriver was my hero. I was stationed two days from a road in the mountains of the Himalayan kingdom and I never met the director of the Peace Corps. But he inspired me. He was “Sarge” to all of us, and we often talked about him. He visited Nepal once, this exuberant, inspiring presence who believed that the only thing higher than Mt. Everest was the human spirit. He thought people were capable of anything, even me. We just had to do it. When I started my trilogy on the Kennedy family in the late eighties, I got to know Sarge, and I realized it was not easy being married . . .

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The Peace Corps & ABC 20/20 – part 1

As many of you did, I watched the ABC 20/20 program last Friday night that included a segment entitled “Scandal Inside the Peace Corps: Investigation into whether the Peace Corps puts women into dangerous situations.”  I felt a great deal of sympathy for those involved – Katie Puzey, who was murdered March 12, 2009 in Benin, her family, and the RPCV women who stepped forward to tell their stories of being attacked while serving overseas. And to see Katie smiling out from the past in a homemade video shot by her cousin who visited her site only months before the brutal murder was breathtakingly sad. I also felt very sorry for the Peace Corps’ new deputy director, Carrie Hessler-Radelet, who endured endless 20/20 questions: “What did the Peace Corps Administration know? When did they know it?” Carrie was unable or unwilling to answer anything. It appeared by the end of the long interrogation that . . .

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