The Peace Corps

Agency history, current news and stories of the people who are/were both on staff and Volunteers.

1
Peace Corps videos of A Day in the Life
2
A Writer Writes — “The Peace Corps: It Can Get in Your Blood” by Bob Criso (Nigeria)
3
RPCVs Helping Refugees In El Paso
4
New Issue of WorldView from NPCA
5
Video of Senator Harris Wofford Memorial Service at Howard University
6
BIRDS OF PASSAGE — Review of Movie that ties drug trade to PCVs
7
Saying Goodbye to Harris Wofford
8
Remembering Harris Wofford
9
Harris Wofford Memorial Service (Ethiopia)
10
Review–Tacoma Stories by Richard Wiley (Korea)

Peace Corps videos of A Day in the Life

    Peace Corps held a contest for serving Volunteers asking them to create a video  showing a  Day in the Life of people  they served.  The ten finalists are posted on You Tube and this Peace Corps link will bring you to the videos.  They are great!  https://www.peacecorps.gov/peace-corps-week/ (Personal Note, in my opinion. So many of the Peace Corps public records describe the Volunteer in terms of his or her relationship with Peace Corps Washington, despite Shriver’s inverted pyramid.  So many of the writings of RPCVs describe Host Country Nationals in terms of their relationship to us, the Volunteers.  These videos focus on the daily lives of Host Country people, their dignity, their work, their joy. They are beautiful. Please watch them and add to the number of views.) This is my favorite video . . .

Read More

A Writer Writes — “The Peace Corps: It Can Get in Your Blood” by Bob Criso (Nigeria)

    THE PEACE CORPS: IT CAN GET IN YOUR BLOOD by Bob Criso (Nigeria 1966-67, Somalia 1967-68)  • The Reverend Nana Yaw Amponsah Antwi is pastor of The Presbyterian Church of Ghana, half a block away from my apartment. Every Sunday the street buzzes with women dressed in those resplendent West African prints and stylishly-sculpted head-wraps. Some of the men walk with obvious pride in their traditional robes, others just wear suits. The kids look like American kids but everyone looks so spiffed up as if they were going to a wedding. I overhear their melodic Twi which sounds similar to the Igbo that I studied for hours every day during Peace Corps training. Sometimes the women set up tables in front of the church after services and sell traditional foods like garri, yams and palm oil. These were the very staples of my diet in Ishiagu, Nigeria. If . . .

Read More

RPCVs Helping Refugees In El Paso

On February 16th, I posted an article and request from the Bishop of El Paso—sent to me by his cousin Patricia Silke Edmisten (Peru 1962-64). You can read the Bishop’s request here:https://peacecorpsworldwide.org/rpcvs-needed-in-el-paso/ On February 19th, Dale Gilles (Liberia 1964-66 & PC/W 68-73 & 90-93) reposted my request on two Facebook pages relating to Liberia RPCVs and Friends of Liberia (FOL) which he follow closely from Thailand where he lives. In both cases he received a few “likes” and comments, and recently he wrote me, “in the last couple of day, I have indeed, once again, seen firsthand the positive power of communication, the internet and Facebook. Funny how the pebbles we drop make such ripples.” The following thread of emails come from Sean Sullivan, a long time friend of Dale and Peace Corps colleague, who was on the staff in Liberia 1971-73, and was also on the Peace Corps Staff . . .

Read More

Video of Senator Harris Wofford Memorial Service at Howard University

Thank you for joining us last weekend to celebrate the remarkable life and legacy of Senator Harris Wofford at Howard University. I know we are all tremendously moved and inspired by the impact he had on so many people and on our country. Please feel free to share this video of the memorial service with your networks, and with those that were not able to join us in person. All of us at Voices for National Service pledge to carry Harris’ legacy and determination forward as we work together to expand opportunities for all Americans to serve, as he did throughout his extraordinary life.

Read More

BIRDS OF PASSAGE — Review of Movie that ties drug trade to PCVs

    A controversial movie ties Colombia’s drug trade to the Peace Corps. It’s still a good movie. By Michael O’Sullivan Reporter, Washington Post February 27 at 1:33 PM   On the road to the Oscar shortlist for best foreign language film, the Colombian drug drama “Birds of Passage” has picked up a number of smallish awards and nominations, and it has ruffled some feathers along the way. Although it ultimately didn’t make the cut as one of this year’s five nominees, some publications, including the New Yorker, have lavished praise on the film, which tells the story of an indigenous Wayuu clan whose traditional values are corrupted by the lure of outside drug money. (Intriguingly, former husband-and-wife filmmakers Ciro Guerra and Cristina Gallego — whose previous collaborations include the gorgeous, Amazon-set black-and-white drama “The Embrace of the Serpent” — divorced while making “Birds.”) At the same time as the film has charmed reviewers, . . .

Read More

Saying Goodbye to Harris Wofford

This Saturday, March 2, 2019, at Howard University over 1000 people gathered to celebrate the life and legend of Harris Wofford. Family, close and distant, life-long friends, former Peace Corps and National Service Volunteers, political friends and rivals, and strangers drawn to the college by the magic of the name: Harris Wofford. In over two and one-half hours, Harris was remembered, celebrated for his life of service to America and the world, and as he always was in life, the center of conservation, jokes, and comments, ‘did you hear what Wofford just said?’ It was an emotional and fun-filled afternoon for everyone who loved and respected Harris and wanted for themselves to do better in life and show him that we were worth of his attention and respect. He made us all better people. So many people were in the college auditorium that I could not begin to recount their . . .

Read More

Remembering Harris Wofford

    I was among the first Peace Corps Volunteers, a new concept of international cooperation crafted by Sargent Shriver and Harris Wofford together with Warren Wiggins, Bill Josephson and others in two rooms of the Mayflower Hotel just days after the election of John F. Kennedy in the winter of 1961. We were in our twenties for the most part, volunteering without any real idea of what we were doing but following Kennedy’s challenge “ask not what your country can do for you, but what you can do for your country.” Harris Wofford became our leader, our guide, our father confessor and our friend. Little did we know about him or his family when we first arrived in Africa. He was less than a decade older than most of us. I remember once, just days after arriving in-country, walking with a handful of other PCVs from the university dorms at . . .

Read More

Review–Tacoma Stories by Richard Wiley (Korea)

Tacoma Stories by Richard Wiley (Korea, 1967-69) Bellevue Literary Press, 2019 270 pages $16.99 (paperback)   Reviewed by Mark Jacobs (Paraguay 1978-80) I can’t get through a day without it. Reading, that is. Sometimes, I have a hard time going pageless for a couple of hours. I’m so habituated to reading, I can forget why I do it. Tacoma Stories just reminded me why: one reads in the hope of delight. And that’s what Wiley’s new book provides. The linked stories that make up the collection are deeply pleasureful reads. How does he do it? One way is with the sentences. Wiley writes nothing like Kafka, but the unexpected leap from one sentence to the next in Tacoma Stories can evoke Kafka’s extraordinary, nerve-jangling transitions. Apposite sentences end paragraphs where they need to be ended. They describe a character. They figure in dialogue. Real readers, true recidivists who cannot resist . . .

Read More

Copyright © 2019. Peace Corps Worldwide.