March 1, 1961 (Washington, D.C.)

I have today signed an Executive order establishing a Peace Corps on a temporary pilot basis . . . I recommend to the Congress the establishment of a Permanent Peace Corps — a pool of trained Americans men and women sent overseas by the United States Government or through private organizations and institutions to help foreign countries meet their urgent needs for skilled manpower . . . . Let us hope that other nations will mobilize the spirit and energies and skill of their people in some form of Peace Corps — making our own effort only one step in a major international effort to increase the welfare of all men and improve understanding among nations.
John F. Kennedy
President of the United States


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  • CHEER that over time there have been mountains and valleys and rain forests and coastal plains served by Peace Corps volunteers. I think I read someplace some 60 thousand of them? Really it is just one volunteer doing a job that matters.

  • Edward,

    As of October 1, 2017, the number of people who had served in the Peace Corps was over 230,000!!

    • That seems SO MANY it awes me. ONE per cent of the 230,000 OR EVEN a TENTH of that COULD BE SUCH A FORCE force that the gates of complacency would BE DISMANTLED. But they need awakening. Hope how.

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