Archive - June 2012

1
Review of Bruce McDonald's A Breeze in Bulgaria
2
Nominate the Best Peace Corps Book(s) Published in 2011
3
David Mather (Chile 1968-70) Novel "One for the Road"
4
NPCA Into The Travel Business
5
Vote for RPCV Jasperdean Kobes (Ethiopia 1962-64)
6
A Writer Writes: Reset the Hook by Folwell Dunbar
7
RPCV Admits Abusing Little Girls
8
RPCV Pleads Guilty to Sex Abuse, AP News Reports
9
A Writer Writes: My Peace Corps Report Card
10
Apply for this job! We don't need Non-RPCVs writing for the Peace Corps!

Review of Bruce McDonald's A Breeze in Bulgaria

A Breeze in Bulgaria by Bruce McDonald (2002-04) BookBrewer $21.29 (paperback), $6.99 (Kindle) 341 pages February 2012 Reviewed by Ken Hill (Turkey 1965-67) THEY HAD PLANNED THEIR RETIREMENT and a move from California to Colorado to be closer to family. But Bruce and Stormy McDonald happened to glance at a Peace Corps recruitment ad in the summer of 2001 that changed their plans — and their lives. Within a year they were in Bulgaria, their great new adventure had begun.  In ended too soon!  Not long after the beginning of their second year of service a frightening event intervened. Theirs was an extraordinary experience, shared masterfully in A Breeze in Bulgaria. They were highly experienced, strongly motivated, “older” Volunteers. Bruce had completed career #1 as an Air Force aviator, and #2 in the defense industry before he and Stormy were infected by the Peace Corps bug. Stormy had worked in . . .

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Nominate the Best Peace Corps Book(s) Published in 2011

Peace Corps Writers Awards for Books Published in 2011 It is time to nominate your favorite Peace Corps book published in 2011. Make your nomination(s) in the comment section following this announcement so people can see what books have been recognized. You may nominate your own book; books written by friends; books written by total strangers. The books can be about the Peace Corps or on any topic. The books must have been published in 2011. The awards will be announced in August. Thank you for nominating your favorite book written by a PCV, RPCV or Peace Corps Staff. A framed certificate and money are given to the winners. Paul Cowan Non-Fiction Award First given in 1990, the Paul Cowan Non-Fiction Award was named to honor Paul Cowan, a Peace Corps Volunteer who served in Ecuador. Cowan wrote The Making of An Un-American about his experiences as a Volunteer in Latin America in . . .

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David Mather (Chile 1968-70) Novel "One for the Road"

This article about David Mather (Chile 1968–70) was published in Vermont’s Valley News on Saturday, June 23, 2012. • Peace Corps Service Inspires Novel by Dan Mackie David Mather has always tried to leave space on his to-do list for adventure. The Lyme resident can spin tales of motorcycle trips in Central America, an Indiana Jones-style flight deep into the Brazilian interior through a storm (details included “rivers of vomit”), a summer aboard a Norwegian tramp freighter crossing the Pacific, and hitchhiking in North Africa. His life in Lyme has been something of an adventure, too. When he arrived there in the early ’70s, he built a cabin in the woods one mile up an abandoned town road. “First I built the cabin, and then I had to figure out how to make a living,” he said. He wasn’t entirely ready for what was ahead. “I was a flatlander, as . . .

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NPCA Into The Travel Business

The National Peace Corps Association (NPCA) has selected San Diego-based Discover Corps (a division of Terra Education) to operate a new program, “Next Step Travel.” These two-week trips allow individuals to travel and volunteer abroad in the Dominican Republic from October 27 – November 9, 2012, February 16 – March 1, 2013 or May 11 – May 24, 2013 or in Guatemala from October 6 – 19, 2012, March 9 – March 22, 2013 or April 20 – May 3, 2013. Individuals will work alongside Returned Peace Corps Volunteers living in those countries while learning first-hand about sustainable development projects being implemented by volunteers in the field. Participants will also get the opportunity to volunteer themselves. Terra Education is best known for its division called “Global Leadership Adventures” that offers service-learning programs for high school students. Upon hearing of the launch of “Next Step Travel,” several parents reached out to . . .

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A Writer Writes: Reset the Hook by Folwell Dunbar

This article was published first in New Orleans in The Lens, an on line investigative reporting site, on the 19th of June.  It was brought to my attention by Carol Scott (Ethiopia 1965–67). Thank you Carol for the heads up. Folwell Dunbar is a writer and educator now living in New Orleans, but he served in Ecuador from 1998 to 2002 where he raised sheep, trout, bees and guinea pigs. Since then he has worked as a teacher, coach, trainer and consultant. • Reset the hook by Folwell Dunbar (Ecuador 1998–02) THE FIRST LESSON I EVER TAUGHT was in Pachamama, Ecuador. I was a wet be­hind the ears Peace Corps Vol­un­teer, and it was my first charla, or work­shop. I was de­liv­er­ing a pre­sen­ta­tion on the im­por­tance of crop­ping sheep tails to a group of sea­soned campesinos, who ob­vi­ously knew far more about ovine man­age­ment than I ever would. They . . .

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RPCV Admits Abusing Little Girls

RPCV Jesse Osmun pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court in Hartford yesterday to engaging in illicit sexual conduct with children. The victims were 3 to 6 years old at the time. “While serving as a Peace Corps volunteer in South Africa, Mr. Osmun committed horrific, unforgivable crimes,” said Assistant Attorney General Lanny A. Breuer. “He was supposed to be helping young children in need, many of whom were orphans, but instead, he preyed upon them, sexually abusing several young girls under the age of six. He betrayed the Peace Corps and the children he had traveled to South Africa to help.” Osmun faces up to 30 years in prison and restitution to his victims when he is sentenced Sept. 11. Under guidelines, he faces between 14 to more than 21 years. Authorities say Osmun persuaded the children to engage in illicit sexual acts by playing games with them and providing . . .

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RPCV Pleads Guilty to Sex Abuse, AP News Reports

APNewsBreak: Ex-Peace Corps worker to plead guilty June 27, 2012 NEW HAVEN, Conn. (AP) – A former Peace Corps volunteer charged last year with sexually abusing young girls while serving in South Africa plans to plead guilty in Connecticut, authorities told The Associated Press on Wednesday. Jesse Osmun is due in U.S. District Court in Hartford on Wednesday afternoon for a guilty plea proceeding, said Tom Carson, spokesman for the U.S. attorney’s office, and Richard Meehan Jr., Osmun’s attorney. He’s expected to plead guilty to traveling from the United States to engage in illicit sexual conduct with children. Authorities have said the 32-year-old Milford resident molested five children under the age of 6, some multiple times, and gave them candy from 2010 to 2011. The Peace Corps has said it was made aware of the allegations after Osmun resigned and called the allegations of sexual abuse “reprehensible.” With the Peace . . .

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A Writer Writes: My Peace Corps Report Card

My Peace Corps Report Card by Bob Criso (Nigeria & Somalia 1966–68) A FEW MONTHS AFTER RETURNING to the States in 1968 I got a letter from the Peace Corps  stating that I had “satisfactorily” completed an intensive nine week training program in the Virgin Islands and then served “satisfactorily” as a Volunteer in Nigeria and Somalia. The letter briefly described my teaching responsibilities and community projects. At the time I wasn’t sure if “satisfactorily” was a judgment on the quality of my performance or if it was just a standard form letter. Later I learned that the Peace Corps doesn’t comment on how the job was done, nevertheless I wondered how I would have graded myself. I was the third PCV teaching at St. John Bosco Secondary School in Ishiagu, Nigeria. The first Volunteer was talked about with such reverence and admiration by the principal, the students and the . . .

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Apply for this job! We don't need Non-RPCVs writing for the Peace Corps!

Vacancy Summary Peace Corps Writer-Editor, FP-1082-3 Announcement Number: DPC12-A0144-CC Application Deadline: 07/06/2012 Job Location: Washington,Dist of Columbia Open Date: 06/22/2012 Salary Range: Min: 81256.0 – Max: 119327.0 Location Notes: Pay Schedule: Annual Who May Apply: US Citizens Time Limit: Term Promotion Potential: 3 Number of Vacancies: 1 Work Schedule: Full Time Notes: Ten Reasons to Work for Peace Corps! (1) Voted in the top 4 “Best Places to Work in the Federal Government” for small agencies in 2011, (2) the Peace Corps has a unique global mission. (3) Benefits include higher salary caps than the Federal standard with (4) quicker step increases. (5) Peace Corps employees earn non-competitive eligibility after 3 years of service and (6) have the chance to be selected for an annual Leadership Development Academy. (7) The working environment is highly flexible with alternative schedules, credit hours, teleworking. (8) There’s a Distinguished Speaker Series, and (9) work-life . . .

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