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News

February 21, 2018

In Memoriam – February 2018

From long standing public servants, to an icon of the civil rights movement, to an early Silicon Valley entrepreneur, to a late-in-life volunteer who was among the oldest to serve in the Peace Corps. So many impressive members of the Peace Corps community passed away in recent weeks and months. We remember them here.   She served as a special assistant to four Peace Corps directors between 1976 and 1982, and is credited with quadrupling the number of women and minorities appointed as country directors and senior staff. But that wasn’t the first Peace Corps encounter for Nancy A. Graham (1926 – 2018). That came...

February 16, 2018

Calling for Your Nominees for the Harris Wofford Global Citizen Award

National Peace Corps Association is accepting nominations for the 2019 Harris Wofford Global Citizen Award. Do you know a phenomenal leader in a country where Peace Corps Volunteers served — and his or her life was influenced by the Peace Corps? If so, now is the time to recognize their work by nominating this leader for this prestigious award. Download the Wofford Award nomination packet, the nominator form and nominee form, and submit all materials to [email protected] by December 21, 2018. NPCA is proud to celebrate the tireless individuals abroad who have yet to be thanked for their dedication and hard work. To do this, we need to hear from you....

February 12, 2018

President’s FY19 Budget Signals More Cuts for the Peace Corps

Dear NPCA Community,   The President’s budget for fiscal year 2019 was released today and it proposes a budget of $396 million for the Peace Corps. After already requesting a $12 million cut in fiscal 2018—the deepest from a White House in over 40 years—the 2019 request further reduces Peace Corps' budget by another $2 million.  This represents a step in the wrong direction.  At a time when supply and demand for Peace Corps Volunteers is robust, when American grassroots diplomacy is urgently needed to strengthen relationships with communities around the world, and when more returned Volunteers are needed in leadership positions in...

February 8, 2018

J. Henry “Hank” Ambrose, NPCA Board Chair, Reflects on his Peace Corps journey

In celebration of Black History Month, we asked NPCA Board of Directors Chair, J. Henry “Hank” Ambrose, to reflect on his Peace Corps journey.   Hank entered Emory University in the fall of 1965, after graduating from a segregated high school in Memphis, Tennessee. The first in his family to attend university, Hank expected it to be a different world, but not in the ways he encountered.  Active in high school, he was eager to get involved on campus. However, he immediately faced resistance.  He was blackballed, as were other men of color, from “rushing” a fraternity.   Not thwarted, he pursued...

February 7, 2018

2017 Sam Farr Congressional Leadership Award Winners Selected

We are proud to announce the winners of the 2017 Sam Farr Congressional Leadership Award are Senator Lindsey Graham, Senator Patrick Leahy, Representative Ted Poe and Representative Joe Kennedy. As Chairman and Vice Chairman, respectively, on the Appropriations Committee, Senator Graham and Senator Leahy have worked to ensure that the Peace Corps has the funding it needs.  Representative Poe and Representative Kennedy have taken up the critical task of improving the health, safety and security of currently-serving and returned Volunteers.  The awards will be presented by former Representative Sam Farr during NPCA’s Capitol Hill Day of Action on March 1st.   Despite the Administration proposing...

February 7, 2018

Senate Committee Passes Safety/Health Legislation

On the five-year anniversary of the death of Nick Castle, a Peace Corps Volunteer who served in China, legislation named in his memory took a step closer to passage in the United States Senate.   Yesterday, the Nick Castle Peace Corps Reform Act of 2017 (S. 2286) was approved unanimously by the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. The legislation outlines key parameters to ensure the agency hires well-qualified personnel capable of administering effective health care services for volunteers, and calls upon the agency to complete all open recommendations from a 2016 Inspector General Assessment on medical care. The legislation also includes provisions that extend key elements of volunteer safety legislation (passed in 2011)...

January 30, 2018

National Peace Corps Association Supports Continued Improvements to Safety and Security of PCVs

National Peace Corps Association (NPCA) continues to stand by Returned Peace Corps Volunteers (RPCVs) that were victims of sexual assault during their service. We also recognize the efforts Peace Corps has made to better support victims of sexual assault.  Legislation introduced by Rep. Ted Poe (R-TX) and Sen. Bob Corker (R-TN) will also further address the challenges that victims face in country and upon their return home.   NPCA strongly supports both pieces of legislation and encourages you to join us.  Throughout the month of March, during our National Days of Action, we are meeting with lawmakers at the district level and...

January 28, 2018

Saving Lives Through Art

Three San artists from D’Kar, Botswana, recently traveled to the United States for the first time for an exhibit and sale of their unique, colorful folk art. The artists—Jan Tcega John, Xhoma Simon,  Ndodonyane Ditsheko-- and the Kuru Art Director Maude Brown, spent 11 days in Santa Cruz, California as guests of the exhibit organizer, Peggy Flynn, RPCV Botswana (2013-2016). Fifteen oil paintings were sold via live and silent auctions; 37 original linocuts were sold, and a seven-day safari for two in the Okavango Delta of Botswana was auctioned as were three Annieglass © plates that were hand painted by the San artists a...

January 22, 2018

In Memoriam – January 2018

An iconic country music songwriter. An RPCV whose journey to the Peace Corps began in Nazi Germany. Leaders in the fields of mediation and conflict resolution. There's a long, lifetime of accomplishments among those we honor who recently passed away, and we are especially saddened by the untimely death of a serving volunteer.   The Peace Corps community mourns the recent death of Bernice Heiderman (1993 - 2018), who passed away suddenly while serving as a volunteer in Comoros. A graduate of the University of Illinois at Chicago, Bernice was an education volunteer, teaching English at a junior high school on the island...

January 17, 2018

Former Country Director, Gilbert Collins, Jeopardy Champion!

The Gilbert Collins story, continues today as he participates in a 6th quiz session on Jeopardy. Jeopardy, “America’s Favorite Quiz Show,” draws on contestant’s comprehensive knowledge in all fields. The show has been the appropriate venue for Gilbert Collins, Princeton University’s Director of Global Health Programs, to apply his academic skills and experience.  Employing his considerable experience in international service – including eight years as the Peace Corps Namibia Country Director and Associate Director in Botswana – he has become Jeopardy’s first “streaker” of 2018. Gilbert is also the first 5-time “streaker” to be placed on the list. Gilbert Collins previously served as Princeton’s Director of...