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Peace Corps Manual Defines Current Drug Policy
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PCVs Booted from Sierra Leone by the Peace Corps for Smoking Marijuana
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Peace Corps Fund Sponsors Third Goal Writers’ Workshop this September in Maryland
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Towering Task to be Narrated by Annette Bening
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PERCEPTION AND DECEPTION — Joe Lurie (Kenya)
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Forbes Magazine — “Communicating Successfully Across Borders: A Q&A With Craig Storti” (Morocco)
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The Most-Read Blog Item on our Site
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Review — COMING OF AGE IN EL SALVADOR by Jim Winship
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Review — THE MOSQUITO COAST by Paul Theroux (Malawi)
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Review — A GAME IN THE SUN by John Coyne (Ethiopia)

Peace Corps Manual Defines Current Drug Policy

    MS 204 Volunteer Conduct Effective Date: December 1, 2017 Responsible Office: Safety and Security (OSS); Counseling and Outreach Unit (OHS/COU)Supersedes: 09/08/17; 02/09/17; 06/25/15; 10/31/14; 7/10/14; 8/19/11; 06/28/11; 03/18/11; 5/20/05; 11/26/03; 2/04/93; 5/04/83; MS 237, 4/30/73 (Note:  I have copied the following section on drug use.  The link is to the entire section on T/V conduct.) “3.5 Drug Use 3.5.1 General Policy Except as described in section 3.5.2 below regarding Voluntary Self-Referral, a V/T found to be involved with drugs in a manner not authorized by the Peace Corps for medical purposes, in any way in any country, will be administratively separated immediately pursuant to section 3.5.4. The Peace Corps enforces this strict policy not only because the cultivation, manufacture, and traffic in and use of drugs, including marijuana, is illegal in most countries; but also because drug involvement by V/Ts in any country could seriously jeopardize the entire . . .

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PCVs Booted from Sierra Leone by the Peace Corps for Smoking Marijuana

Late last March approximately sixty plus of the seventy plus PCVs currently in-country in Sierra Leone were sent home from Freetown by the Peace Corps Office of the Inspector General for smoking marijuana in-country. Much of the information I have received is from two Sierra Leone RPCVs currently back in-country visiting their host county. A group of approximately 15 PCVs were partying on Bureh Beach outside of Freetown and were smoking pot, at least according to a woman working for the U.S. Embassy. She reported the PCVs to Peace Corps Washington and they sent an agent out from the Peace Corps Inspector General Office to investigate. According to the RPCV, who served in the early days in Sierra Leone and were in Freetown, this IG agent, demanded that all the PCVs, approximately 74, come to Freetown by the next day. Of course, given their remote locations and limited transportation, most . . .

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Peace Corps Fund Sponsors Third Goal Writers’ Workshop this September in Maryland

       Peace Corps Fund Sponsors Third Goal Writers’ Workshop this September in Maryland   Release Date: May 1, 2019                                                   Contact: Matt Losak (Lesotho 1985-88) 301-588-3987    Want to spend three days in September on the Eastern Shore of Maryland discussing your book with other RPCV writers and published authors? Peace Corps Writers, with support from the Peace Corps Fund, is arranging a small, inexpensiveworkshop for ten to fifteen RPCVs and formers Peace Corps staff working on their own Peace Corps memoir, poetry, or fiction. The workshop will be held from Wednesday, September 18th to Saturday, September 21rd at Shore Retreats on Broad Creek, on the Eastern Shore of the Chesapeake Bay, Maryland. Costs range from $100 for those on tight budgets, $250 for those of modest means, and $500 for those who can afford it. The retreat facility includes shared living quarters, meals and snacks. The writing program will . . .

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Towering Task to be Narrated by Annette Bening

Annette Bening to narrate A Towering Task. Bening is a four-time Academy Award nominee, two-time Golden Globe, and Screen Actors Guild Award winner. The Towering Task, the Peace Corps Documentary, is a production by Alana deJoseph (Mali 1992-94). “It is incredibly important that we talk about how we as Americans engage with the rest of the world. The Peace Corps has been sending people to countries across the globe for almost 60 years, and many Americans don’t even know that it still exists. I am so glad that I can help tell this important story now when it feels more relevant than ever.”  ~ Annette Bening  

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PERCEPTION AND DECEPTION — Joe Lurie (Kenya)

    Joe Lurie (Kenya 1967-68) is the Executive Director Emeritus of UC Berkeley’s International House, and author of Perception and Deception: A Mind-Opening Journey Across Cultures (Nipporica Associates, 2018). C-Span just aired a book  talk in which Joe references discoveries he made while he was a PCV in Kenya that opened his eyes in profound ways, and were the seeds of his book, now in its second expanded edition.  In case the program is of interest, it’s likely to be aired again , but in case you miss it, here it is. A former director of semester and summer programs abroad for the School for International Training in France, Kenya, and Ghana, Joe lived in Europe for four years, and lectures widely for Cal Discoveries in Africa, Asia and Europe. He is fluent in French as well as Swahili. The Joe Lurie Returning Peace Corps Volunteer Gateway Fellow for entering Ph.D . . .

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Forbes Magazine — “Communicating Successfully Across Borders: A Q&A With Craig Storti” (Morocco)

    Craig Storti (Morocco 1970-72) is a nationally known expert in the field of intercultural communications and cross-cultural adaptation. He is Director of Communicating Across Cultures. Internationally known as an expert in intercultural communications and cross-cultural adaptation, he is the author of many books, including Culture Matters, a cross-cultural workbook used by the U.S. government in over 90 countries. He is also the author of a book read by many PCVs, The Art of Crossing Cultures. Craig’s most recent book is Why Travel Matters: A Guide to the Life-Changing Effects of Travel, reviewed on this site.. He has lived nearly a quarter of his life abroad—with extended stays in Moslem, Hindu, and Buddhist cultures—and speaks French, Arabic, and Nepali. In his interview with Forbes Magazine, Laura Brown asked: What does the rest of the business world think of U.S. communication style? And how can U.S.-based businesses communicate productively with their global . . .

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The Most-Read Blog Item on our Site

      This is a sad and true and terrible story entitled “One mother’s story of how the Peace Corps failed her daughter.” It is also the most read blog post on our site. I first heard about what had happened to this Volunteer from Health Justice for Peace Corps Volunteers, an NPCA Affiliate group started by RPCV Nancy Tongue (Chile 1980-82). I uploaded the story on our site on April 26, 2016. Today, the story continues to catch the attention of readers. That tells me that when read, the reader mentions the story to other RPCVs who come to our site and read the sad account. When checking Google Analytics, I see recently published items usually have around 100 ‘hits’ in any seven day period. This story of how the Peace Corps failed a Volunteer has had 60 or more ‘hits’ every week since 2016. The majority of . . .

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Review — COMING OF AGE IN EL SALVADOR by Jim Winship

    Coming of Age in El Salvador Jim  Winship (El Salvador 1970–72) Verdada Press 2014 228 pages $16.95 (paperback), $9.99 (Kindle) Review by D.W. Jefferson (El Salvador 1974–76; Costa Rica 1976–77) • If you are interested in a more in-depth discussion of immigration from Central America, its causes and effects, I highly recommend this book. Though, like the author, I was a Peace Corps Volunteer (PCV) in El Salvador (1974-76), and have followed events there since, I learned a great deal about the country’s current situation from this book. Jim Winship first lived in El Salvador from 1970 to 1972 as a PCV. He returned there in 2005 as a Fulbright Scholar and has been visiting at the rate of about twice a year since then. This book is based upon research Winship and his colleague Virginia Quintana of the Panamerican University of El Salvador have done, and upon other . . .

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Review — THE MOSQUITO COAST by Paul Theroux (Malawi)

    The Mosquito Coast by Paul Theroux (Malawi 1963-65) Houghton Mifflin Publisher 374 pages 1982 $21.20 (paperback); $9.99 (Kindle)   Reviewed by Mark Walker (Guatemala 1971-73) • I recently came across an interview of Paul Theroux in “By the Book” in The New York Times, in which he reveals that The Mosquito Coast was his favorite most personally meaningful book. He goes on to say, “…Over a period of two years, knowing it was a great idea and plot, I wrote confidently in rainy, cold, sedate London, and it is, of course, a book set in sunny, warm anarchic Honduras,” at which point I realized that although I had seen the movie, I had never read the book! I had read all of his non-fiction works but only Kowloon Tong in the fiction genre, so I decided to finally read The Mosquito Coast. I was also thinking about the . . .

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Review — A GAME IN THE SUN by John Coyne (Ethiopia)

    A Game in the Sun and Other Stories John Coyne (Ethiopia 1962–64) Cemetery Dance August 2018 $40.00 (hard cover)   Reviewed by Leita Kaldi Davis (Senegal 1993-96) • John Coyne is the author of more than twenty-eight nonfiction and fiction books, including a number of horror novels, and his short stories have been collected in “best of” anthologies such as Modern Masters of Horror and The Year’s Best Fantasy and Horror. His publisher, Cemetery Dance Publications, specializes in horror and dark suspense and includes Stephen King and Ann Rice in its list of authors. That gives you an idea of the high caliber of Coyne’s writing style and limitless imagination. A Game in the Sun is a collection of stories that he has written over a number of years from college days (“The Crazy Chinaman”) to one written last year about Catholic guilt. He has also written and edited books on golf, including The Caddie Who Knew Ben . . .

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