2013 Ruppe Award for Outstanding Community Service
By Kelly Reid on Monday, July 1st, 2013Each year, the National Peace Corps Association awards the Loret Miller Ruppe Award to an outstanding member group for its work toward a project or projects that promote the Third Goal of the Peace Corps — “bringing the world home” — or who continue to serve host countries, build group spirit and cooperation, and promote service. (See a list of past award winners here.)
In order for a project to be eligible for the award the project must have either been ongoing for at least three years, or completed within the last two years. While this award certainly recognizes the tremendous work being done by NPCA member groups across the nation, is also advances ideas that other groups may apply within their own communities. The award is named after Loret Miller Ruppe, the 10th and the longest serving Peace Corps Director and a fiercely devoted champion for the agency and the Peace Corps community as a whole.
The 2013 winners of the NPCA Ruppe award are the member groups Friends of the Dominican Republic and Northern California Peace Corps Association. Both groups have their own particular fundraising model, then awarding the acquired funds to various projects selected based on the group’s criteria.
Friends of the Dominican Republic
Friends of the Dominican Republic (FDR) is an organization constructed of former and current Peace Corps Volunteers, staff, and friends of the Peace Corps who seek to create a community that provides support to current volunteer projects, promotes the understanding and appreciation of Dominican culture, and shares news and information about the Dominican Republic. FDR breaks down its service into three categories: “Community,” “Development Support,” and “Sharing the Dominican Culture.”
Friends of the Dominican Republic funds these projects via the Community Challenge Fund, a fund that supports specific basic needs projects including work with providing water, electricity, educational facilities, sanitation, and health services. The fund also provides grants up to $2,500 for construction materials that are utilized in projects where community members provide the labor. In addition to providing necessary funding, volunteers also impart education on hygiene and health.
This award recognizes the Friends of the Dominican Republic’s exemplary efforts in leading the Community Challenge Fund, which has invested over $30,000 in 14 projects that have benefited 5,000 persons in the Dominican Republic.Northern California Peace Corps Association
The Northern California Peace Corps Association (NorCalPCA) is a 600 member 501(c)(3) nonprofit, volunteer organization affiliated with the NPCA. NorCalPCA provides support for both domestic and international projects via funds raised at RPCV gatherings and conferences. The NorCalPCA utilizes these funds in backing community development projects across the world. In addition, the Northern California Peace Corps Association provides grants (generally ranging from $500-$2,000) to feasible projects aimed at improving community welfare, fostering self-sufficiency, and addressing community needs.
This award recognizes the Northern California Peace Corps Association’s outstanding efforts in small service projects through efforts with the Boys and Girls Club, Habitat for Humanity, the National Park Service, etc. In addition, NorCalPCA’s active engagement in the Mentoring Program, Speakers Match, and Peace Corps Sendoffs, as well as support to projects in Tanzania and Morocco via the small grants program, exemplify the values held by the entire Peace Corps community.
Congratulations to both groups!