Why Peace Corps Volunteers?

John writes —


Peace Corps Volunteers are the ones who tell the real story of the Peace Corps. They tell of their experiences in essays, articles, short stories and memoirs. Stories that are the historical documents of the agency. These remembrances are valuable to the host country as future generations will know how American Peace Corps Volunteers came to teach their children, care for their parents and grandparents, and help develop their country. By reading what PCVs have to say, host country nationals will know what once their homes were like, and these PCVs cared enough to write down the memories of living and working with their ancestors. For us, they are a treasure of literature and life.



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  • You are so right! The Peace Corps experience is a font of great stories and global insights. Thanks to PCW for always encouraging PCVs to write! What would we do without you!

  • Absolutely. The Peace Corps experience means so many things. Each RPCV processes their Peace Corps time differently, which is why this web site, plus the work of PCW, means so much.It gives those desperate views oxygen. My view is that Peace Corps is a recovering organization. Yes, the number of PCVs abroad right now is low, but growing. It will recover. Meanwhile the PC spirit lives on in so many RPCVs.

    Barry Hillenbrand
    Ethiopia 1963-1965

  • Absolutely true I never thought about how PCV stories would be valuable social history for the host countries. Good work

  • My wife Ligia–who is Guatemala–and I will be taking two granddaughters to Guatemala in June 8 & 20 years old) to share our love for Guatemala, but also to share stories about my Peace Corps experience which included meeting and marrying my wife. We’ll spend time with my son as well, who rode his grandfather’s horses in San Jeronimo, Baja Verapaz, where I initially met my wife. Bringing up the next generation of bi-cultural, bi-linguistic travelers to learn and respect those from other cultures is an important part of our Peace Corps legacy.

    And yes, writing about it to share with a broader audience is key as well. The Guatemala Journey–my next book–includes an essay on 60 years of the Peace Corps in Guatemala. We’re in the middle of a Kickstarter crowdfunding campaign to broaden the audience.

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