Archive - March 21, 2016

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“Sirens’ Sweet Song” by Gerald Karey
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Tom Hebert’s Peace Corps Settlement House

“Sirens’ Sweet Song” by Gerald Karey

• Sirens’ Sweet Song by Gerald Karey (Turkey 1965-67) • The Sirens, Homer tells us, enchant all who come near. Anyone who draws to close to their island and hears their singing will never be welcomed home again. The Sirens sit in a green field and warble to death men who try to join them, with the sweetness of their song, Homer says, or words to that effect. Odysseus sailing home from Troy after the Trojan War orders his crew to put wax in their ears so they cannot hear the Sirens. But he has himself lashed to his ship’s mast, so he may hear them. Their song is irresistible and Odysseus begs to be freed from his bonds so that he may join the Sirens. His pleas are ignored, or perhaps his crew simply cannot hear, and Odysseus is borne safely past on the waters of the wine-dark sea. . . .

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Tom Hebert’s Peace Corps Settlement House

The Peace Corps, as we know, has Three Goals, but the agency traditionally has only spent about 1% of their budget on the Third Goal of the Peace Corps act, i.e., that’s the RPCVs community. That given, Tom Hebert (Nigeria 1962–64) has come up with a great idea to help RPCVs, would-be PCVs, and the Peace Corps community-at-large with the “Peace Corps Settlement House” in Washington, D.C. The Peace Corps Agency, of course, will not support the effort. As the Peace Corps Director wrote Tom recently— I know how passionate you are about the community enrichment that is possible through the settlement house model. I know that you also realize that the leadership for a settlement house project must come from foundations, the NPCA/RPCV community, and committed others, because it is outside the authorities of the Peace Corps. So this is what Tom Hebert has in mind. If you are willing and can help . . .

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