Archive - May 2011

1
Vote for Tom Neilson's Environmental Song!
2
Stan Meisler Weighs in on Kenny's Peace Corps Proposal
3
Peace Corps Book wins Award from Independent Publisher Organization
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“What?” I exclaimed. “Some reports compiled by Peace Corps Volunteers are actually permanently preserved at the National Archives!”
5
Congressional Hearing on Sexual Violence in the Peace Corps
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Talking With Short Story Writer Joan Richter
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April 2011 Peace Corps Books
8
Conclusion Comments of The Peace Corps in a Smaller World
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The Peace Corps in a Smaller World
10
When We Were Young And Having Fun In The Peace Corps

Vote for Tom Neilson's Environmental Song!

Tom Neilson (Colombia 1970-74 & Senegal 1976-78, plus a gig as Kenya Training Officer 1981-82) is really a singer, and his song “Biomess” about about the proposed biomass plant in Greenfield, Massachusetts is nominated for an Earth Day song of the year award. If you support the environment, (or Tom!) you can vote for the song, but you need to do it by the end of today. (midnight, I think) The more votes the song gets, the more publicity for clean energy, forest protection, clean air, water, sustainability. You vote by selecting the download option under his photo at this site. Thanks. http://earthday.sonicbids.com/BandDetails.aspx?b=28241&bn=Tom+Neilson

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Stan Meisler Weighs in on Kenny's Peace Corps Proposal

You might have missed Stan Meisler’s  comment on the proposal someone named  Charles Kenny  wrote for the Center For Global Development entitled: “The Peace Corps in a Smaller World: A New Model for the Next 50 Years.” Kenny is a fellow at Global Development, or whatever they call   such ‘Think Tanks’. Judging from his CV, he is a Brit so we have to cut him some slack for not knowing what he is talking about. Stan Meisler, however, does know what he is talking about. Stan was a Peace Corps Evaluator in the early days of the agency and recently wrote, When the World Calls: The Inside Story of the Peace Corps and Its First Fifty Years. Charlie James Kenny as it  appears from his CV, has a blog: http://www.charleskenny.blogs.com but has never volunteered for anything or ever had a real job (you know, as Republicans like to say, “has he met a payroll?”) Charlie recently published his . . .

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Peace Corps Book wins Award from Independent Publisher Organization

The 2011 Independent Publisher Book Awards were announced yesterday and One Hand Does Not Catch a Buffalo: 50 Years of Amazing Peace Corps Stories, edited by Aaron Barlow (Togo 1988-90), won the Silver Award in the Travel Division.  This is the first of four books edited under the direction of  Jane Albritton (India 1967-69) and published by Travers’ Tales, an imprint of Solas House. In 2007, Albritton initiated a project to collect Peace Corps stories in four volumes to publish this year on the 50th Anniversary. At that time, she named the project Peace Corps at 50 (www.peacecorpsat50.org). Jane and three other editors collected and edited these books over the last four years. Two of the books in the series-One Hand Does Not Catch a Buffalo: Africa,  and Gather the Fruit One by One: The Americas, are now available. The next two volumes-A Small Key Opens Big Doors: The Heart of . . .

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“What?” I exclaimed. “Some reports compiled by Peace Corps Volunteers are actually permanently preserved at the National Archives!”

I was reminded, once again, that such outbursts are frowned upon in this establishment. Here is the description in the ARC catalog that caused me such glee: Mid-Service Conference Reports, compiled 1971 -1975, documenting the period 1970 – 1975. ARC Identifier 1512310 / MLR Number P92 – http://www.archives.gov Scope & Content This series consists of reports compiled by Peace Corps volunteers, concerning projects they were concerned with and the general situation in the country they were serving in. The Reports were generally compiled at the one-year mark of their two year service. I had been searching for anything written by Volunteers and had been frustrated at finding almost nothing.  All reports that I had seen were reports generated by or for PC/DC by administrative staff. The voices of serving Volunteers as well as those of Host Country staff and counterparts were not there. Absent such contributions, The Peace Corps collection is . . .

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Congressional Hearing on Sexual Violence in the Peace Corps

The hearing on issues of sexual violence in the Peace Corps has been announced for next Wednesday, May 11, at 9:30.  This hearing is open to the public.  If you are in or near D.C., or planning to fly in, First Response Action would love to have your support!   First Response Action Coalition www.firstresponseaction.org http://firstresponseaction.blogspot.com Join First Response Action on Facebook Hearing Information  Wednesday, May 11, 2011  9:30 AM  Room 2172 of the Rayburn House Office Building Witnesses Panel 1: Problems of Safety and Security Ms. Jessica Smochek RPCV Ms. Carol Clark RPCV Karestan Chase Koenen, Ph.D. RPCV Ms. Lois Puzey Parent of Late Peace Corps Volunteer Ms. Jennifer Wilson Marsh Hotline and Affiliate Service Director RAINN Panel 2: Assessment and Reform The Honorable Aaron S. Williams Director Peace Corps Panel 3: A View from the Inspector General Ms. Kathy A. Buller Inspector General Peace Corps

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Talking With Short Story Writer Joan Richter

Joan Richter is the wife of early Washington, D.C. Evaluator and Deputy Director of the Peace Corps in Kenya, Dick Richter, and is a  long-time successful short story writer. We were privileged to publish one of her stories in our collection of Peace Corps fiction, Living On The Edge, published by Curbstone Press in 2000. She has recently published a collection of her stories, The Gambling Master of Shanghai: And Other Tales of Suspense, with our new imprint, Peace Corps Writers. It is the third book that we have published this year and I asked her recently a few questions about her writing and her Peace Corps connection and experiences. • Joan, what’s you connection to the Peace Corps? My husband Dick Richter was an evaluator for Peace Corps from 1963 to 1965, and then deputy director of PC/Kenya from 1965 to 1967. Our two sons, age 5 and 7 . . .

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April 2011 Peace Corps Books

Vietnam Journeys Photos by Charles Fields Text by Mary Ann Bragg (Botswana 1980–82) Fields Publishing $50.00 264 pages 2011 • I Did What I Had to Do by James E. Diamond (Chad 1971– ) Vantage $14.95 334 pages 2010 • The Caddie Who Won The Masters by John Coyne (Ethiopia 1962-64) Peace Corps Writers $13.50 316 pages 2011 • The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Barefoot Running by Thomas Hallowell (Morocco 2006–08) and Dr. Craig Richards Alpha $18.95 352 pages 2011 • The Everything Travel Guide to Ireland by Thomas Hallowell (Morocco 2006–08) and Katie Kelly Bell Adams Media $15.95 432 pages 2010 • Unofficial Peace Corps Volunteer Handbook by Travis Hellstrom (Mongolia) Lulu $15.95 256 pages 2010 • You Never Try, You Never Know: Six Years in Liberia by Ruth Jacobson (Liberia 1971–74) Court Street Press $18.95 (paperback); $6.95 (e-book) 402 pages 2011 • The Gambling Master of Shanghai: And . . .

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Conclusion Comments of The Peace Corps in a Smaller World

[If you don’t have the time to read Charles Kenny’s full report (not long, 15 pages) here is his conclusion…and what he recommends. While his brief bio doesn’t say, my guess is that Charlie at one point early in his life was awarded a Fulbright and loved his time outside of the U.S. Anyway, here are his Policy Conclusions for the Peace Corps.] Policy Conclusions In a globalized world with a growing number of different opportunities for young Americans to live and volunteer in developing countries, there may be ways to increase the efficacy of the Peace Corps in delivering on the promotion of world peace and friendship. It is perhaps fair to conclude that the most unarguably accomplished of the three goals the Peace Corps strives towards is promoting a better understanding of other peoples on the part of Americans. But perhaps particularly when it comes to maximizing the . . .

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The Peace Corps in a Smaller World

Thanks to Kevin Lowther (Sierra Leone 1963-65) who later went onto work in Washington, D.C. and with C. Payne Lucas wrote Keeping Kennedy’s Promise: The Peace Corps, Unmet Hope of the New Frontier, (a book that beat-up, in some ways, the agency) for giving me a heads-up on an essay produced for the Center For Global Development (I know, I never heard of them either) that was penned by Charles Kenny and entitled: “The Peace Corps in a Smaller World: A New Model for the Next 50 Years.” Don’t you just love essays about the Peace Corps written by people who never were PCVs? Anyway…. Charles is a is a senior fellow at the Center. His current work covers the demand side of development, the role of technology in quality of life improvements, and governance and anticorruption in aid. He is also a contributing editor at Foreign Policy magazine and a Schwartz Fellow at the New America Foundation. Charles . . .

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When We Were Young And Having Fun In The Peace Corps

Here’s a famous Peace Corps story from the early years that has been told and retold a couple thousand times, and is retold in the late Coates Redmon’s book Come As Your Are: The Peace Corps Story.[Coates was a a writer for the Peace Corps in the early days, later a speech writer for Rosalynn Carter, and later still, director of the Robert F. Kennedy Journalism Award.] It is a story [as all good Washington, D.C. do] that begins in Georgetown. It was a Sunday evening in the fall of 1961 and Dick Nelson, who was Bill Moyers’s assistant, and Blair Butterworth, whose father was ambassador to Canada, and who worked as a file clerk at PC/W, were living together at Two Pomander Walk in Georgetown. That Sunday, Moyers’ wife and kids were in Texas and he came over to see the two guys, who had been roommates at Princeton. . . .

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