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Affiliate Group News

Latest Updates

 

Affiliate Group Network Annual Meeting - September 18 at 1 pm Eastern

This is an unprecedented time for the Peace Corps community — when we need to reimagine and reshape our work for a changed world. Join the leadership teams from the vibrant network of more than 180 affiliate groups for the Affiliate Group Network Annual Meeting (AGNAM) — to be held online. This is the meeting of the year for NPCA affiliate groups — from our newest members to those who have nurtured our community for decades. It’s your opportunity to engage with, learn from, and share best practices with other affiliate groups. Bring your questions, concerns, challenges, and ideas!

AGNAM Priority Objectives:

  1. Connect affiliate groups and share best practices.

  2. Provide group leadership with direct insight into NPCA capacity-building initiatives, projects, and opportunities.

  3. Keep groups connected throughout the year.

We’ll post the final schedule and any updates here in the weeks ahead. Register here to get information on how to access the meeting.

To assist in our planning and to identify the eligible voters list (“voting delegates”), please complete this brief survey in advance of the meeting.


Peace Corps Connect 2021

Mobilizing for a Lifetime of Service and Impact

Virtual Conference September 23–25, 2021 | Pre-conference events September 18–22

 

This is a pivotal moment for the Peace Corps community. This year we mark six decades of service by Volunteers in communities around the world. But this is also an unprecedented time for the Peace Corps. In March 2020, all Volunteers were evacuated because of the COVID-19 pandemic. In a community-driven effort, National Peace Corps Association is working to help transform Peace Corps: to reimagine, reshape, and retool the agency for a changed world. So while we celebrate this historic milestone, we also focus on the work that must be done to make a better and stronger Peace Corps for the future.

In a robust digital program over three days, we will be looking back at impact over the decades — and to the future of what Peace Corps needs to be. Conference sessions will address issues important to the community, from racial justice to climate change to refugees. In addition to the conference, there will be a broad range of pre-conference events September 18–22. That includes a Day of Advocacy on September 22, marking the date on which President John F. Kennedy signed the Peace Corps Act. 
Learn more about pre-conference events here.

REGISTER NOW!


NPCA Board Election Results

Each year, NPCA members vote to fill divisional director positions on the NPCA Board of Directors. Elected this year for three-year terms starting September 26, 2021:

  • Northeast (U.S.): Eileen Love O'Donnell
  • MidAtlantic & Nationwide (U.S.): Evelyn Ganzglasss
  • Europe/North & East Africa: Nikole Allen

Meet your member-elected directors.


Join our Social Media Campaign #RPCVService60

In anticipation of the 60th anniversary of Peace Corps Connect conference in September, NPCA's Affiliate Group Network Advisory Committee is launching a social media campaign to highlight the successes of affiliate groups in the last year. We’re striving to share 60 posts by the end of the summer as a lead up to the Peace Corps Connect conference September 23–25. Post, tag, share and message NPCA to spread the good work even further. Learn more.


Join a Conversation for Geographic Affiliate Groups

What are your challenges as a U.S. geographic affiliate group? We would like to continue a conversation among geographic affiliate groups to discuss successes, challenges and questions around communications, social media and how to expand and diversify your audience and engage your membership. Join the conversation on Tuesday, October 5.


Weekly Affiliate Group Leaders Lunch - Friday at 1:00 PM Eastern

Our weekly Affiliate Group Leaders Lunches have sparked fun and helpful conversations on topics ranging from how to get creative on Zoom to considerations for writing/updating bylaws. Each week, the conversation revolves around your questions and sharing of best practices, so please drop in! NPCA staff members are standing by on Zoom to listen and to facilitate conversation. Register on our website to get the Zoom link. Feel free to bring your lunch!

In July, we recorded the presentations from cause-related affiliate groups with their ideas and activities to increase member engagement. Click on the links below to access the presentation recordings. We have more causes and groups to highlight and engage your members, so please share your feedback.

 


Monthly Training for NPCA's Community Builder Platform

Is your group using NPCA's Community Building Platform (SilkStart)? Then join us for our Monthly Training the second Friday of each month! You can find agendas, notes and recordings of the first trainings here as well as the agenda for future training sessions and links to important resources! RSVP here for the next training on September 10th.


 

Promote Discussion about Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) in the Peace Corps Community and Elsewhere

The Museum of the Peace Corps Experience and the Returned Peace Corps Volunteer Oral History Project are pleased to share with you the Many Faces of Peace Corps: 60th Anniversary  video* to use as a prompt for promoting discussion about diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) in the Peace Corps community and elsewhere. The recently released video features personal stories and reflections of eight Returned Peace Corps Volunteers (RPCVs) who identify as members of U.S populations under-represented in the Peace Corps. The stories, gleaned from oral history interviews, shed light on challenges faced by volunteers of color, low-income, and LGBTQIA+ volunteers serving throughout the world. Volunteers candidly discuss improvements needed in Peace Corps operations going forward while emphasizing numerous benefits of cross-cultural relationships among individuals and communities at home and abroad.

We encourage NPCA affiliate groups and other members of the Peace Corps community to consider showing the 19-minute video to promote discussion of DEI-related issues faced by PCVs worldwide and strategies for creating a more inclusive Peace Corps. Recommendations for addressing these and other challenges confronting Peace Corps are included in Peace Corps Connect to the Future: A Community Report on How to Reimagine, Reshape, and Retool the Peace Corps for a Changed World.

Potential discussion questions: 

  • What did you learn from the video about diversity, equity and inclusion in the Peace Corps?
  • Describe the feelings evoked by these stories.
  • What issues do the RPCVs in the video raise related to: 
    • The recruitment of Black, indigenous and people of color (BIPOC) and other under-represented volunteers and staff?
    • Training of all volunteers?
    • Volunteer pre-service, in-service, and post-service supports and benefits?
    • Training of Peace Corps staff, in the U.S. and host countries?
  • What suggestions for change do the RPCVs in the video make?
  • What recommendations are included in the Peace Corps Connect to the Future report?
  • What can we as individuals and/or our affiliate group do to address these issues?
     

Please let us know how you are using this video and the outcomes of your discussions. This information will be shared via various websites, including on the Resources page of Museum of the Peace Corps Experience website. 

 

Share your story

The RPCV Oral History Project invites all returned and evacuated PCVs and Peace Corps staff to share their unique Peace Corps experiences. To date, close to 1000 Oral Histories spanning 60 years of service have been collected and archived at the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum [add link] and, since August 2020, in the University of Kentucky Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History [add link]. Anyone  interested in being interviewed for the collection may complete this form on the Peace Corps Oral History website. The team will schedule a virtual oral history interview with one of our experienced RPCV interviewers.

 

*Many Faces of Peace Corps is an initiative of the Museum of the Peace Corps Experience. The video – Many Faces of Peace Corps; 60th Anniversary - was released March 1, 2021 and produced by the RPCV Oral History Project in partnership with the Museum for the exhibition Peace Corps at 60: Inside the Volunteer Experience.

 

CONTACT

            oralhistoryproject@peacecorpsconnect.org

            contactus@peacecorpsmuseum.org


NEW! Zoom Meeting and Webinar Options and Closed Captioning

One of the benefits of affiliation with NPCA is the use of the videoconferencing platform Zoom at no cost to you. That platform is now upgraded to host both meetings and webinars. What's the difference? Basically, if you want to engage your members in collaboration and interaction (including break-out rooms), you probably want a meeting. If you want to make a presentation (which could include Q&A), you probably want a webinar. Click here to see the benefits of both and find which one suits your event's needs the best.

All meetings now support 300 participants and all webinars support 500 attendees.

Make your online meetings more inclusive and accessible to all of your members. Closed captioning is now activated on all NPCA Zoom accounts. Included with the meeting is a free version (which has its limitations and is not perfect), but you can also assign one of your attendees to type in the captions or pay for a third-party live captioning service. Learn more about closed captioning.

Learn more and request your next meeting time.


Host a Virtual Screening of A Towering Task: The Story of the Peace Corps

As Peace Corps celebrates its 60th anniversary, it faces an unprecedented crisis. Volunteers were evacuated worldwide due to the pandemic. There have been proposed budget cuts, threats to its independence, and the departure of dozens of bipartisan agency defenders in Congress. While capturing the history of both the agency itself as well as individual volunteer experiences, the documentary A Towering Task: The Story of the Peace Corps sets the stage for a conversation about the future of the Peace Corps in this current context.

Working closely with the film’s director, RPCV Alana DeJoseph, NPCA developed a toolkit specifically for affiliate groups on hosting a virtual screening. We can also help cover some licensing fees and link you to panelists for post-film discussions. Share your screening plans and needs.


Connect us to NPCA Ambassadors around the Globe

National Peace Corps Association is searching for returned Peace Corps volunteers and former staff who are interested in becoming NPCA Ambassadors. Applicants must be presently residing in countries where Peace Corps programs are operating (or offices are still open in preparation for the return of Volunteers) and in some past program countries on occasion. NPCA Ambassadors will represent the interests of  NPCA and will promote NPCA programs to host-country institutions, USAID, the Peace Corps, current and prospective partners, and the Peace Corps community living and working in host countries. Ambassadors will be appointed through a process that incorporates input from NPCA staff as well as corresponding country-of-service affiliate groups (eg. Friends of Guatemala). The NPCA Ambassadorship is a voluntary service with two-year, renewable terms. 

Roles and responsibilities include, but are not limited to:

  1. Serving as the NPCA’s in-country liaison to host country officials, Peace Corps leadership, USAID staff, the expatriate Peace Corps community, and current and/or prospective partners. 
  2. Attending Peace Corps pre- and in-service training events, Volunteer swearing-in ceremonies, and Close of Service conferences to raise awareness of NPCA and affiliate groups. 
  3. Monitoring and evaluating RPCV-led projects funded by NPCA’s Community Fund grants program and affiliate group grants programs. 
  4. Promoting awareness of NPCA’s annual Harris Wofford Global Citizen Award and assisting in identifying candidates for nomination. 
  5. Identifying and nominating candidates for NPCA’s annual Sargent Shriver Award for Outstanding Humanitarian Service.
  6. Providing local coordination as a point of contact for NPCA programs and prospective new business opportunities. 
  7. Coordinating with NPCA’s Serving Volunteer Advisory Council representatives. 

We are seeking NPCA members in good standing who are passionate about the Peace Corps, capable of embodying Peace Corps principles, and prepared to commit to a two-year in-country service. Please fill out the NPCA Ambassador Interest Indicator if you are interested. Thank you! 


Peace Corps Community Connect

We’re thrilled to announce the launch of Peace Corps Community Connect. The goal of this important new initiative goes to the heart of our mission to build a diverse and welcoming Peace Corps community. We’re doing this with an eye on the future and the work that’s in front of us. Why? The Peace Corps community and the agency are at a point of inflection. With all Volunteers brought home amid the global pandemic, we need to connectinform, and engage our community like never before.

 

Here’s what we’re doing.

  • Launching a community outreach initiative to connect and engage the Peace Corps community.
  • Mobilizing the entire Peace Corps community, including the 250,000 RPCVs, families, former staff, and host country staff for greater social impact.
  • Connecting the diverse Peace Corps network in order to amplify all of our voices and show how the Peace Corps experience has shaped our lives and communities — here and around the world.

 

Let’s talk CommUNITY. Here’s how it will help affiliate groups.

Peace Corps Community Connect will strengthen individual affiliate groups and ensure that more members of our community benefit from the resources of NPCA — from webinars and newsletters to WorldView magazine and our global reach.  

  • Establish new connections, find old friends, and expand opportunities for members.
  • Strengthen your outreach efforts, broaden support for group projects, and tackle issues crucial to the community.
  • Welcome and support the thousands of evacuated PCVs who returned home in 2020 — many of whom will benefit by being better connected to the community. 
  • As we celebrate the 60th anniversary of Peace Corps, document the Peace Corps legacy in the voices of your group — so we can show communities across the country and around the world how your service has made a difference.

Most important of all, together we will create a more vibrant and energized community.

 

Together we are stronger.

Outreach Specialists will assist affiliate groups with information, tools, and support to help you find and connect your community. And by combining our communities, together we are stronger.

 

Yes, our group is interested

 


Peace Corps Connect to the Future: A Community Report on How to Reimagine, Reshape, and Retool the Peace Corps for a Changed World

In the Spring of 2020, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Peace Corps evacuated all of its roughly 7,300 Volunteers from service around the globe. For the first time in the nearly 60-year history of the agency, no Peace Corps Volunteers are currently serving overseas. On a scale never seen before, the global evacuation of Volunteers brought to the fore some longstanding challenges for the agency and the broader Peace Corps community. All this called for an unparalleled response.

This past summer, National Peace Corps Association convened a series of national community discussions and a global ideas summit to ask some far-reaching questions about the future of Peace Corps in a changed world. Thank you for joining in the discussions and providing your input. Those conversations were crucial to shaping the report.

This report provides specific and actionable recommendations for multiple stakeholders: policymakers in the Peace Corps agency and the federal Executive Branch’s leadership; the United States Congress; and the Peace Corps community, particularly NPCA.

Read the full report and listen to our podcast about the report.


Another Affiliate Groups Launches on NPCA's Community Builder Platform

Congratulations to Friends of Afghanistan on launching their new website on NPCA’s Community Builder platform. Their mission is to build and sustain an information exchange about Afghanistan and its people, and to network for their peace and prosperity. Learn more and join their efforts.


Amplify Your Events

NPCA has a full calendar of events each month, including many that would be of interest to your group members. We hope that you will consider sharing your events with us as well! Posting our events on your calendar and yours on the NPCA calendar will exponentially increase our reach.

  • To post to NPCA's website: For groups on the Community Builder platform, simply opt to share the event with NPCA. For other groups, fill in the form under "Submit Updates/Requests" in the upper right column of this page.
  • To share events from NPCA's event calendar with your membership: simply copy the text and links from our calendar.

Thank you!


Annual Group Reaffiliation

Each year, we check in with each affiliate group to see how you're doing and learn how we can better support you. Whether you've had a banner year or you could use a little extra support, we need to hear from you. It's a great time to write an annual report. And don't just share it with us; share it with your members, too! Need some tips on writing one? Visit the Communications tab of our Affiliate Group Resource Library or download our toolkit

To reaffiliate, all you need is one of these:

  • Activities and financial reports (if you handle money), or just one annual report — OR —
  • Links to reports posted to your NPCA website Affiliate Group Directory page and/or posted online

Fill out a short form with that info, respond to a few quick questions and your group is done for 2021! We're past the May 31, 2021 deadline, so if you group's reaffiliation is still due, please send it in ASAP.

Questions? Challenges? Problems? Drop us an email at groups@peacecorpsconnect.org.

Note: Did your group first affiliate in 2020? If so, we'd still love to hear from you, but you are not required to reaffiliate this year.


Divisional Board Directors

Reach out to the director in your division and add them to your email distribution list. In fact, you may already have them on your list, as we transfer the permanent emails as directors change. Add groups@peacecorpsconnect.org (which goes to NPCA staff working with groups) and npcaglf@peacecorpsconnect.org (which goes to Hannah Wishart, Affiliate Group Network Coordinator), then the director for your division:

Nikole Allen (Northeast U.S.)
npcanortheast@peacecorpsconnect.org

Rogelio Quintanar (Southern Tier U.S.)
npcasouth@peacecorpsconnect.org

Kim Herman (West U.S.)
npcawest@peacecorpsconnect.org

Mary Owen-Thomas (Upper Midwest U.S.)
npcamidwest@peacecorpsconnect.org

Evelyn Ganzglass (MidAtlantic and Nationwide U.S.)
npcamidatlantic@peacecorpsconnect.org

vacant (Europe, North & East Africa)
npcaeuropeneafrica@peacecorpsconnect.org

Faith Van Gilder (West, Central and Southern Africa)
npcawcsafrica@peacecorpsconnect.org

Katie Long (The Americas)
npcaamericas@peacecorpsconnect.org

Jed Meline (Asia and the Pacific)
npcaasiapacific@peacecorpsconnect.org


See the Full List of Board Directors

 


Update Your Group Profile

NPCA's online Affiliate Group Directory is a great way for potential new members to find and learn more about your group! Visit it here, find your group, and if needed, make updates. Watch the video below to learn how.