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News

October 10, 2023

A Bipartisan No-Brainer

Meet the Congressional National Service Caucus By Ava Smith The existence and efforts of the National Service Caucus are indicative of the power and potential of national service in the United States, something that should be continuously celebrated and cultivated. The National Service Caucus was established in 2004 by Rep. Christopher Shays (R-CT), Rep. David Price (D-NC), Rep. Tom Osborne (R-NE) and Rep. Harold Ford (D-TN). The caucus became bicameral in 2008 when Senator Thad Cochran (R-MS) and Christopher Dodd (D-CT) established a companion caucus in the Senate. “My ambition when I was in college was to be in the Peace Corps and maybe serve in some public way in government…and give that to discussions...

October 10, 2023

Pride and Prejudice

How LGBTQ+ volunteers cope in the field By Gwyn Skiles In a small village in western Kenya, a Peace Corps Volunteer who, for safety reasons, will be referred to as Michael, is engaging in meaningful discussions about sexuality, where he encourages the people he meets to pursue life as who they are and safely explore relationships with others. Michael identifies as a bisexual man but has been careful about whom he shares this with during his service. In Kenya, many regu-lations make same-sex relations unlawful, and a majority of Kenyan society holds negative views toward LGBTQ+ persons. “If you do...

October 10, 2023

The Admiral Thanks You for Your Service

Admiral James Stavridis on National Service and Career Development By Robert Nolan Admiral James Stavridis, the former NATO supreme allied commander and past dean of the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy speaks with WorldView editor Robert Nolan about the role of Peace Corps in national security, how national service can be better incentivized, and career opportunities for newly returned Volunteers. Robert Nolan: As we were putting this issue together, it raised a question for many of us in the community about how we actually define the term “national service.” What are your thoughts on that question? James Stavridis: I’ll get to your question, but first let...

October 10, 2023

Call of Duty: Can National Service Help Heal America?

Despite broad support for volunteering and a successful track record, national service programs have not been able to close the gap between supply and demand. Is this a missed opportunity to help heal a fractured country? By Greg Emerson Illustration by Richard Borge   The effect of the COVID-19 pandemic on the national service sector has been a tale of two extremes. On one end of the spectrum, AmeriCorps members (and the many prematurely evacuated Peace Corps Volunteers who joined the effort) were instrumental in administering COVID-19 vaccines to communities across the United States, the latest in a series of examples of service workers...

October 3, 2023

Former Peace Corps Directors Call on Senate to Pass the Peace Corps Reauthorization Act

In a bipartisan show of support, ten former Peace Corps Directors who have served under Republican and Democratic administrations alike call on the Senate to pass the Peace Corps Reauthorization Act. The most sweeping Peace Corps legislation in a generation, it would bring important reforms and support for Volunteers as the agency seeks to meet the needs of a changed world.   Press Release   Today, 10 former Peace Corps Directors who served in both Republican and Democratic administrations sent a letter to Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), calling on them to pass the Peace Corps Reauthorization...

September 29, 2023

What Happens to the Peace Corps During a Government Shutdown?

Late on Saturday, September 30, Congress passed a so-called "continuing resolution", which will keep the federal government operating through the first 45 days of the new fiscal year (FY 2024). Congress now has until November 17 to agree on FY 2024 spending, pass another continuing resolution, or face a government shutdown once again. By NPCA Staff Should there be a government shutdown in the future, what does that mean for the Peace Corps? In the agency's operations plan to the federal Office of Management and Budget, Volunteers in the field will continue their work, and overseas posts will remain open.   “All activities...

September 28, 2023

House Defeats Peace Corps Funding Cutting Amendment

Last Thursday evening, the House of Representatives defeated an amendment that called for further proposed cuts to the Peace Corps' Fiscal Year 2024 budget. The vote was 295 - 135 to defeat the amendment. 83 Republicans joined 212 Democrats to defeat the amendment. Use this link to see how your representative voted. Then, use this link to thank your rep (or express disappointment) for their vote. On Thursday, the House of Representatives considered the Fiscal Year 2024 State/Foreign Operations (S/FOPS) appropriations bill, with dozens of highly contentious amendments. This included a brief debate on an amendment to further cut funding for the Peace Corps.   Use...

September 15, 2023

Explore Videos from the NPCA’s Virtual Peace Corps Connect 2023

On September 8–9, National Peace Corps Association hosted a virtual two-day conference — Peace Corps Connect 2023. Here are videos and resources from the event. By NPCA Staff On Friday, September 8 and Saturday, September 9, NPCA hosted more than 400 members of the Peace Corps community for Peace Corps Connect 2023. During our virtual conference, NPCA Board of Directors and staff showcased updates on NPCA achievements; the latest developments in a key continuation of service initiative; and the three Loret Miller Ruppe Award finalists, along with NPCA's inaugural Lifetime Achievement Award given to John Coyne and Marian Haley Beil for producing the Peace Corps Worldwide blog. We were privileged to receive updates from RPCV Congressman John Garamendi (D-CA) on Peace...

September 1, 2023

New NPCA Board Directors Announced

New NPCA Board Directors Summary 2023 By Dan Baker I am thrilled to introduce the forthcoming additions to NPCA's Board of Directors. With the unprecedented participation of 1,267 voters, our membership has effectively filled five vacant positions for member-elected seats on the board. Moreover, the governance committee has thoughtfully selected five candidates from the ballot to occupy open member and board-elected seats, for an expanded total of 21 board directors. Get to know our ten new directors below. Each of these individuals brings a unique set of skills, experiences, and perspectives that will undoubtedly enrich our organization's efforts and contribute to our ongoing success. We are very...

August 18, 2023

Recommended Groups Supporting Relief Efforts in Maui

We at NPCA express our heartfelt appreciation to the Returned Peace Corps Volunteers of Hawai’i for their exceptional dedication in supporting the victims of the recent fire in Maui. Their willingness to step forward during times of crisis exemplifies the core principles of empathy and service that the Peace Corps embodies. Mahalo for being a shining example of unity and assistance in the face of adversity. We have received a list of recommended organizations supporting relief efforts from RPCVs in Hawai’i where you can send contributions if you wish.       Here is a list of groups recommended by the Returned Peace...