Author - Joanne Roll

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Common Sense Media Reviews “A Towering Task”
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Ross Anthony of the Hollywood Report Card reviews “A Towering Task” and interviews Alana deJospeh
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The Fallen Peace Corps Memorial Project
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Interim Update: Murder of Kate Puzey: PC Office of the Inspector General
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Republicans in the House of Representatives want to defund EPCVs COVID-19 support
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Quelle Movies reviews A TOWERING TASK
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Promote the virtually screening of A Towering Task
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Peace Corps Announces $1,500 Wellness Stipend For ERPCVS
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Thank you to the RPCV Friends of Colombia
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NPCA urges you to contact your Senator, today

Common Sense Media Reviews “A Towering Task”

The focus of Common Sense Media is information and recommendations for parents. There is also a comment section for children! From the Movie review by Lynnette Nicholas, Common Sense Media “This timely, informative (if slow) documentary sheds light on a truly unique American agency and the goal of using it to create global citizens striving to make an impact on future generations. The film’s overall tone is inspirational, and screenwriter Shana Kelly does a very detailed job of weaving together the personal experiences and testimonials of past and present volunteers, clearly creating correlations with the political climates of particular time periods and their direct impact on global cultures and communities. Not only does A Towering Task showcase the powerful function of the Peace Corps and its history, it also shares the agency’s many struggles, including its high leadership turnover. Vanessa Carr’s cinematography is a great asset to the film. Beautiful aerial shots capture unique locations around the world. A Towering . . .

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Ross Anthony of the Hollywood Report Card reviews “A Towering Task” and interviews Alana deJospeh

  Anthony Ross reviews the Peace Corps Documentary, A Towering Task, and gives it an A-.  Ross also interviews  Producer/Director RPCV Alana deJoseph and the link to the interview is on the webpage.  During the interview, deJosph describes the process of producing the wide ranging documentary of the Peace Corps.  She also talks in depth about her Peace Corps expereience in Mali.  Finally, Alana deJospeh analyzes the Peace Corps at the crossroads today and the possible direction which it may take or may be forced to take. Here is the review by Anthony Ross. from his webpage. The Story of the Peace Corps A TOWERING TASK Review by Ross Anthony Full disclosure: I volunteered in Africa under an American NGO. I was not Peace Corps, but we served in similar ways. Additionally, on some weekend trips to the nearest city, we’d hang out with Peace Corps volunteers and trade stories and . . .

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The Fallen Peace Corps Memorial Project

  On this Memorial Day, it is good to remember those who served in the Peace Corps and lost their lives.  From the webpage about the Fallen  Peace Corps Volunteers Project: ” The Fallen Peace Corps Volunteers Memorial Project, Inc. is a non-profit corporation. It is independent of the U.S. Peace Corps and the National Peace Corps Association, though we are supportive of their missions and have been grateful to receive their encouragement since our inception in 2003. The Fallen Peace Corps Volunteers Memorial Project began as a very personal project envisioned by Chelsea and Donna Mack and inspired by Jeremiah Mack. We maintain this website and a Facebook page, write and respond to letters and emails, attend events and memorial services when possible, and generally do what we can to support others who have also lost a loved one while serving in the Peace Corps and are seeking community. . . .

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Interim Update: Murder of Kate Puzey: PC Office of the Inspector General

  In 2017, the PC OIG followed up on the investigation and trial of the accused of the murder of Kate Puzey. The murder remains unresolved as of today. The OIG had monitored the implementation of the Kate Puzey Peace Corps Volunteer Protection Act of 2011 and that was included.  Jody Olsen, the current Director of the Peace Corps was Acting Director in March of 2009 when Kate Puzey was murdered. Click for an update: https://s3.amazonaws.com/files.peacecorps.gov/documents/inspector-general/Interim_Update.pdf From the update: “Ultimately, all four defendants were acquitted. Three of the defendants had been incarcerated for eight years pending trial, and one had been incarcerated for three years. Despite the extensive investigative fieldwork conducted in Benin and other resources devoted to this investigation by the Beninese Gendarmerie, the Peace Corps OIG, the FBI, and the Regional Security Office of the U.S. Embassy in Benin, the case remains unresolved. OIG and our partners continue . . .

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Republicans in the House of Representatives want to defund EPCVs COVID-19 support

    The NPCA is reporting this possible action and asking the RPCV Community to rally and contact their Congress Representative. From the NPCA Newsletter comes the alarming news: “Legislation would jeopardize funds that provided for health and safety of more than 7,300 evacuated Peace Corps Volunteers amid global pandemic. Let’s keep that from happening. While there has been significant legislation introduced to support Peace Corps and evacuated volunteers, a South Carolina Congressman has announced legislation that would — in part — rescind the $88 million in emergency appropriations approved earlier for Peace Corps. Congressman Jeff Duncan (R-SC) has introduced H.R. 6657, the Working Under Humanity’s Actual Needs (WUHAN) Rescissions Act, which calls for eliminating more than $27 billion from the CARES Act legislation that was overwhelmingly approved by Congress and signed by President Trump in late March. Included in the new legislation is the proposed return of the $88 million appropriated . . .

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Quelle Movies reviews A TOWERING TASK

    A Towering Task: The Story of the Peace Corps “Helping other nations build the strength to meet their own problems, to satisfy their own aspirations, to surmount their own dangers. The problems in achieving this goal are towering and unprecedented. The response must be towering and unprecedented.”  — President John F. Kennedy • The Ugly American by William J. Lederer and Eugene Burdick, published in 1958, demonstrated how Americans working abroad failed to integrate with local communities allowing Russians, who did in fact integrate, to spread Communism. President John F. Kennedy read the book and was spurred to action. His goal was to have Americans volunteer to combat hunger, fight for civil rights and promote world peace by working within the communities they were helping. On September 22nd, 1961, Congress voted to make the Peace Corps a permanent agency. “To help young Americans understand the rest of the world is . . .

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Promote the virtually screening of A Towering Task

Now, more than ever, Peace Corps needs to be kept in the public eye. RPCV Alana de Joseph, Producer of the Peace Corps Documentary, A Towering Task,  has a request. “RPCVs and friends of the Peace Corps can now approach their local movie theaters to virtually screen A Towering Task. Here is the link that can be sent to movie theaters: https://firstrunfeatures.activehosted.com/index.php?action=social&chash=5f2c22cb4a5380af7ca75622a6426917.912&s=f7dd23ab00b1845d65665ab7eef54a0a It’s a great way to support a local business and at the same time get the story out about the Peace Corps.”

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Peace Corps Announces $1,500 Wellness Stipend For ERPCVS

  The advocacy efforts of  the NPCA and the RPCV Community on behalf of the evacuated Volunteers have been successful. https://www.peacecorps.gov/news/library/peace-corps-announces-wellness-stipend-evacuated-volunteers/?fbclid=IwAR1cXq7iOjaLIOqonbXs1MmWJecopuw6AI6SxWXyR1u_cWo81aw_QEXkY6s April 22, 2020 WASHINGTON – Peace Corps Director Jody Olsen announced the agency will provide additional financial support to the 7,000 volunteers and trainees who were evacuated from their posts last month due to the COVID-19 outbreak. “Our volunteers returned to the United States during a very challenging time, so I am pleased to announce this $1,500 wellness stipend,” said Director Olsen. “We are able to provide this one-time stipend thanks to the strong support of the Administration and Congress, which recently authorized a supplemental appropriation for the Peace Corps to cover costs associated with the evacuations and post-service benefits for volunteers.” The new stipend is intended to help returned volunteers and trainees cover near-term health and wellness costs. These funds will be provided in addition to the evacuation . . .

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Thank you to the RPCV Friends of Colombia

This Is A Message from Colombian Ambassador to the Evacuated Peace Corps Volunteers Message from Ambassador Francisco Santos The return of all Peace Corps Volunteers to the United States is heartbreaking to witness, however Friends of Colombia is particularly devastated to know that the countless positive relationships the PCVs formed in Colombia have been unceremoniously interrupted. In this challenging moment, FOC wanted to reassure the 96 volunteers who had to leave Colombia early know that they will always be welcome back. We expressed this idea directly to Colombian Ambassador to the United States Francisco Santos, and, in the true Colombian nature, Ambassador Santos recorded a message of gratitude and open arms. “What you give back Colombia, we appreciate it immensely,” said Ambassador Santos. “And we hope you can return soon.” Message from Francisco Santos, current Ambassador of Colombia to the United States.

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NPCA urges you to contact your Senator, today

    Re-Deploy the Peace Corps? It Begins Here, Now   (Note: If your Senator has not signed the letter, contact his office and urge him or her to do so today) “If you want to ensure the future of the Peace Corps, contact your Senator(s) and urge them to sign a “Dear Colleague” letter circulated by Susan Collins (R-ME) and Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) asking for an increase in Peace Corps funding for the next fiscal year (FY 2021) which will commence on October 1st. It is imperative that the agency has the financial and human resources to get Volunteers back in the field as soon as possible. The Dear Colleague letter, an official correspondence sent by Members of Congress to encourage others to support or oppose a bill, is just the beginning. There’s also legislation being circulated by Senators Todd Young (R-IN) and Richard Durbin (D-IL) requesting strong funding for all international affairs funding, including Peace Corps. Contact your . . .

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