World Map Project Spans Five Continents

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                                                                                                                                        Inside Issue 1, 2010

                                                                                                                                        	 Guyana	Teen	Inspires	Others
                                                                                                                                        	 Tell	Your	Story.	Land	a	Job
                                                                                                                                        	 Agency	Returns	to	Sierra	Leone

World Map Project Spans Five Continents
The NeTherlaNds had rembraNdT and
Spain had Picasso. The Peace Corps has
Barbara Jo White.
      Her work may not be hanging in a
museum, but it is no less visible. Wheth-
er it’s splashed on walls surrounding a
playground in Ghana, exposing itself to
nature’s elements, or displayed on the
front wall of a schoolhouse in Thailand,
The World Map Project endures.
      While she’ll be the first to tell you
she is not an artist, an idea that White                                                                                              World Map projects have been
launched 21 years ago while serving as                                                                                                completed in countries around the
a Volunteer in the Dominican Republic                                                                                                 world in which Volunteers serve —
(1988–1990) finds other aspiring artists                                                                                              (clockwise from left) Panama, Fiji,
picking up a paint brush to leave their                                                                                               project founder Barbara Jo White
mark on the world today.                                                                                                              at a map workshop in 1989, Thailand,
      Nearly all of today’s Peace Corps                                                                                               and Liberia.
Volunteers have either participated in,
or observed, a World Map Project—the
moniker for White’s idea that has found
itself applied to nearly every surface
      While the fruits of her labor can be
seen on at least five of the world’s sev-
en continents, White says, “I think it is
just a small good idea, but once I did it,
I thought it would be good to spread to
other Peace Corps Volunteers and their
      Inter-America and Pacific Country
Desk Officer Ella Ewart (RPCV/Peru,
2006–2008) says all Volunteers in Peru
are asked to complete a World Map
Project. “It’s such a great way to get in-
tegrated into the community. So many
Volunteers work with children and
youth and this is a great way to literally
draw the connection between you, as a             “I always thought it wasn’t exactly about
foreigner, and the community for the               geography, but is more about community. ”
young people,” she says, adding, “It was
really rewarding to me, as a Volunteer,       	                                            B
                                                                                         —		 arbara	Jo	White
to have the map—something tangible
that I could point to and that I created
hand in hand with the kids.”                  each square onto the canvas. When           White recalls.                              map. “That got us through the test
      The seed that fueled the World Map      you’re done with the last square, your           In the words of the hit single from    phase. Then National Geographic came
Project was planted in White’s home in        sketch is in perfect perspective and        that popular Boston album, the ener-        out with its new projection world map
Cary, North Carolina, 10 years before         ready to paint.                             getic Volunteer had “more than a feel-      and I traced that.”
her Peace Corps service. An album                  Success using the method in the        ing” that the idea would become some-            A year later she would find herself
cover from the debut album of the mu-         1970s would lead White to her most no-      thing bigger from that day forward. “I      launching regional workshops with
sical group Boston featured a spaceship       table effort in the 1980s.                  always felt like I was on a mission with    the help of a Peace Corps Partnership
that would serve as a launching pad for            In her first year as an environment    this thing. In a way, it never surprised    grant. “A Volunteer from a neighbor-
future endeavors. “It was my brother’s        Volunteer in the Dominican Republic,        me that it got this big. Good things just   ing area would come to one and lead the
favorite album and I thought, ‘I wonder       White was traveling to an environmen-       kind of happened,” she says.                next—kind of a domino effect,” she says.
if I can paint this using a grid method,’”    tal education conference when a fellow           Applying the grid method to make            She also outlined how to trace, la-
she remembers.                                Volunteer mentioned that she was go-        her first world map, White says she ini-    bel, and grid a world map in the May/
      Leonardo Da Vinci used such a           ing to write to National Geographic to      tially utilized the Mercator projection     June 1989 issue of Peace Corps Times.
method to teach art. It divides the im-       get maps for her students. “I said, ‘The    method that makes countries further         “A sidebar told PCVs to write me for
age you want to paint into smaller “bite      only way you’re going to get a map to       from the equator appear larger. She         free gridded map pages, which I intend-
sized” squares, and then you sketch           stay on the wall is to paint it there,’”    pasted pages together to devise a crude               continued on page 2
continued from page 1                        hand. “I always thought it wasn’t exact-        cialist with the Coverdell World Wise        project has been renewed as the agen-
ed for them to do, though I had no idea      ly about geography, but is more about           Schools Program at Peace Corps, says         cy’s 50th anniversary approaches.
how I would fill orders. Letters poured      community. If we are a stronger com-            many Volunteers share such innovative             While working on a World Map
in and it really launched the project        munity, we can be a stronger group of           ideas with students in the U.S.              Project website, she started “tweeting”
worldwide” she says.                         learners,” White says, adding, “I really             A Volunteer in Burkina Faso began       with Volunteers and discovered many
     Such enthusiasm for the project         think you could have made a mural of            a World Map Project in his host country      were blogging about their maps as well.
continues today due to its simplic-          anything. It’s really about the develop-        and then arranged for his correspon-         One PCV had also requested an update
ity and durability. As White explained       ment process—putting together a group           dence match school to engage in the          of the map. “That’s when I realized that
in that same Peace Corps Times issue,        of people to do something they didn’t           project simultaneously. “The older stu-      The World Map Project had a life of its
“Because few rural schools have maps         think they could do that will make their        dents at the Illinois elementary school      own and is in good PCV hands,” she says.
and many students leave school in their      community a little better, using a few          he is corresponding with will work with           White bought the domain for the
teens, some children never see a world       resources, and then being successful            their teachers to create the map. The        website in
map or have a concept of the world. The      and moving on to another project.”              younger students, including the corre-       June of 2009 and hopes to update a
only way many schools can get and keep            Inter-America and Pacific Coun-            spondence match kindergartners, will         manual in cooperation with the Peace
a map is to have it painted on a wall.”      try Desk Officer Joshua O’Donnell               assist the older students and do smaller-    Corps in 2010.
     The idea has launched new versions      (RPCV/Georgia and Bulgaria, 2001–               scale map activities in their classroom,”         She also remains hopeful that the
of maps, varying in language and style.      2003/2003–2004) suggests the project            says Hestness.                               project she launched in 1988 spurs
“A Volunteer in Madagascar made a map        could be done to facilitate teamwork                 Students from schools in Burkina        more ideas in the coming years. “When
of her country, surrounded by all the dif-   with at-risk youth or those working to-         Faso and the U.S. will exchange photos       I think about projects like it, there are
ferent species of monkeys and plants ex-     ward conflict resolution. “I loved the          and share updates about their progress.      a lot of good ideas out there. The differ-
clusive to that country,” White says.        project and have been looking to do it          “Through this collaboration, the Peace       ence is a little bit of promotion because
     Judee Blohm, publications special-      again in the United States,” he says.           Corps Volunteer, students, and teachers      sometimes, accidentally, we keep good
ist for overseas programming and train-           O’Donnell had heard about the              will do more than improve their geog-        things to ourselves,” she says.
ing support, says the agency continues       project in his first country of service         raphy knowledge; they will experience
to get requests for the manual through       (Georgia) and conducted an after-               a unique connection across place and
its Knowledge Exchange Unit (KEU).
“Despite the hundreds of copies that
                                             school English club activity that includ-
                                             ed a world map mural when he served
                                                                                             culture through shared learning,” Hest-
                                                                                             ness adds.
                                                                                                                                          Map Out a Plan
have been distributed over the years,        in Bulgaria. “We spoke English while                 Many Volunteers use a World Map         If you are interested in creating a world
KEU regularly receives requests for it       working on the map, which was valu-             Project manual that White updated in         map in your community, contact your
and regularly reprints it. The simple        able for the students. They also learned        1995, before taking a 15-year hiatus to      Peace Corps librarian or go to http://mul-
method of enlarging taught in the book       about geography,” he says.                      finish two master’s degrees and a doc-
is useful beyond maps, and the resource           While White wasn’t focused on us-          torate in business administration. She       library/R0088_worldmapproject.pdf.
is cross-referenced in several other         ing maps for teaching purposes in the           also began her teaching career at West-           The project manual and other valu-
publications, such as Adapting Envi-         Dominican Republic, she notes that              ern Carolina University, where she has       able teaching resources are also avail-
ronmental Materials and the Classroom        many of today’s Volunteers develop les-         served as an assistant professor of infor-   able through the Peace Corps Knowl-
Management Idea Book,” says Blohm.           son plans to go with their map projects.        mation systems for the past five years.      edge Exchange Unit (KEU) in the
     The project has also grown to in-       “I also hear from Volunteers who devise              She spoke about the map project on      Overseas Programming and Training
clude a wide range of murals, with HIV/      their own gridded maps for their indi-          the “Today Show” with Willard Scott as       Support (OPATS) office in Washington,
AIDS being among many topics Volun-          vidual countries,” she says.                    part of the Peace Corps’ 30th anniver-       D.C. Any KEU resource can be request-
teers approach with paint and brush in            Emily Hestness, an education spe-          sary in 1990 and her enthusiasm for the      ed through your country post.

Guyana Teen Overcomes Obstacles, Inspires Others
By Chase a. Chisholm | PCV Guyana                           the Open Doors Centre.
                                                                 “Norris is determined … he goes after, he tries,”
ForgeT abouT proper FiNger plaCemeNT on the keyboard,       says Rodwell Anderson, IT course instructor. “When
19-year-old Norris Cummings types with his toes. He         it comes to learning, he is adventurous.”
can also write, play games, and do about anything else           Job internships through Open Doors Centre run
with his feet. Even eat.                                    up to 12 weeks and show trainees how to integrate into
     Living with cerebral palsy, a physical disability      society and find employment. Cummings is finishing
affecting balance and impairing the use of his upper        his internship at the National Commission on Disabil-
limbs, Cummings has overcome obstacles many will            ity (NCD). Karen Hall, program officer for the NCD
never know. But it is not his disability that stands out    Resource Centre, finds Cummings very willing. “He
to most. It is his sense of humor and laughter.             actually asks for work,” she says, laughing. “I cannot
     Laughter is a good thing in life; it will carry one    imagine anything better!”
through the falls. “You gotta fall and get back up. Try                                                                     Norris Cummings, a student of PCV Chase Chisholm,
again,” says Cummings’ classmate, Adonica McDonald.         Moving Forward                                                 uses a computer at the Open Doors Centre in Guyana.
     They are among my students at Open Doors Cen-          Cummings aspires to be an IT specialist. The opportu-
tre for Persons with Disabilities, located on the north-    nity to perform basic troubleshooting, data entry, and              Cummings and his mother acknowledge and are
ern coast of Guyana. The national vocational training       design a brochure at NCD has helped him toward that            encouraged by strides made by the Guyana Ministry
institute helps them complete coursework for a cer-         goal. “[The internship] has been a great way for me to         of Health and nonprofit organizations in Guyana, but
tificate in information technology (IT).                    show off my skills; to show people I can do what they          say it has not reached the level it needs to be.
     Walking alongside Cummings, his classmates,            can do,” he says.                                                   It takes steps to make a stride; years of determina-
and additional community partners helps me encour-              Cummings, who was 11 before he first walked, has           tion to overcome. Doing so with strength of mind, Cum-
age others to pursue information and communication          learned to adapt. He sits on the table to use a computer       mings now walks with a proud bounce in every stride.
technology (ICT) training programs and attend dis-          at home, umpires neighborhood cricket matches, and             “Believe in yourself,” he offers his peers. “Have the de-
crimination recognition sessions.                           enjoys most things any teenager would.                         termination to push for whatever you want in life.”
     Such initiatives also provide the opportunity to           Watching him learn to walk was rewarding for his                Norris Cummings still falls sometimes, but usu-
highlight abilities, not disabilities, to promote volun-    mother. “He has a determined mind,” boasts Yvonne              ally from laughing.
teerism, and to encourage past trainees to give back to     Cummings. She admits there are difficulties her son
their communities.                                          faces due to his disability, including finding transporta-     Chisholm is an education Volunteer from Forest City,
     Cummings is thankful for his two-year tenure at        tion. “Some of the buses pass … they just don’t care.”         Iowa. He is scheduled to complete his service in 2010.

                                              Volunteer	Life

                                              From Lollapalooza to ‘Treasured Islands’
                                                              “Treasured Islands of the South Pacific,” Samoa, where              some extent. Working as a Peace Corps Volunteer has
                                                              my former life of living like a rock star has transformed           been different: various speeds on a bumpy road, work-
                                                              into living under the stars.                                        ing with an allowance, and one better not even think
                                                                   Before the Peace Corps, I lived in Los Angeles                 about drugs or it’s a one-way ticket home.
                                                              and worked in the music industry. I wasn’t a musician                    I have my reasons for leaving and, although I am
                                                              or a performer of any kind, but I shared many of the                a Peace Corps Volunteer, sometimes it’s hard to look
                                                              perks by working behind the scenes, finding new acts,               back and only read about all the cool new bands and
By Joey Carmelo | PCV Samoa                                   throwing parties, and living the life most young people             happening parties I left behind. However, I know that
                                                              dream about.                                                        everything I’m missing will still be there when I re-
Two years beFore my peaCe Corps serviCe, I was back-               Don’t believe me? Don’t worry. I wouldn’t even                 turn, so I better make the best out of my service.
stage with rappers of the Wu-Tang Clan. One year ear-         believe it myself. What’s harder to believe is why any-                  My days of loud concerts three or five times a week
lier, I was on the main stage at Lollapalooza watching        one would leave such glitz and glamour for a volunteer              have been replaced with village church choir every
Daft Punk perform 10 feet from me. Two months before          position in a developing country. Working in music                  Tuesday, Thursday, and sometimes Saturday nights.
my service began, I was at the “Rock the Rabbit” Play-        was fast paced and well paid with plenty of benefits; all           Art installations with live artists have turned into tra-
boy party with bunnies and rock stars. Now, I’m on the        of the cliché—sex, drugs, and rock n’ roll—held true to                                       continued on page 4

Career	Corner

Make Your Service Story Work for You
By Jodi hammer                                      After responding to this question            10 mothers’ groups on child survival and
RPCV Career Center Coordinator                 a few times, the cynic in you might see           health and HIV/AIDS prevention. It was
                                               this inquiry as a misleading one, as it           an amazing opportunity to provide lead-
iF you are NeariNg The eNd oF serviCe, you     seems to indicate a real sense of inter-          ership.” Pause and take a breath. This
are undoubtedly venturing into the in-         est beyond the 20 to 30 seconds that              allows the listener to digest what you’ve
famous post-Peace Corps readjustment           encompass the attention span of your              said, and, if interested in hearing more,
phase that most returned Volunteers talk       listener. However, you might consider,            to follow up with another question. You
so much about. You’re probably strug-          instead, that this seeming lack of inter-         would respond again with a few targeted
gling to reconcile the disparity between       est may also be a reflection of the listen-       sentences, followed by another pause.
the simple yet meaningful life you are         er’s inability to fully comprehend the            This will allow your listener to take in
leaving behind and the mind-boggling           Peace Corps experience.                           the information in a digestible form and/
complexity and pressure of post-Peace               In other words, the key to reducing          or change the subject, with no hard feel-        Tip No. 3: Another great way to practice
Corps life in the United States.               at least part of readjustment frustra-            ings and no sense of rejection. The key          telling your story while fulfilling the third
     You’re contemplating the fact that        tion may come down to the age-old art             is in putting the information out there          goal of Peace Corps is by taking part in
you’ll soon be working hard to create          of storytelling—how to tell your Peace            in small sound bites.                            Peace Corps Week (March 1–7, 2010),
a new home while your readjustment             Corps stories in a way that is engag-                                                              or by organizing a third goal activity at
money runs out quickly. This will most         ing and facilitates an understanding by           Tip No. 2: Such storytelling advice also         any time during the year. Thousands of
likely lead your thoughts toward yet           the non-RPCV. If done appropriately,              rings true for job interviews and network-       RPCVs join forces with local schools,
another pressure—that of having to get         storytelling will not only reduce your            ing events. Remember to keep your sound          places of employment, or other institu-
a job… and soon! It’s enough to make           frustration by allowing you to avoid the          bites short and targeted to the person           tions to share stories and cross-cultural
you consider staying in your dear little       glazed-over look from your audience, it           asking the question or the organization          experiences from their Peace Corps
pueblo, but for most of us, that’s just not    can also ease your transition, and per-           he or she represents. For example, if you        service.
an option. So we do our best to deal with      haps even land you an awesome job.                are networking with someone from the
what comes, as difficult as it may seem,       Following are a few tips related to effec-        Centers for Disease Control and Preven-          Tip No. 4: Finally, when you return to
and move forward. But frustrating              tive storytelling.                                tion, you might focus more on the health         the U.S., consider connecting with your
scenes like the following often thwart                                                           aspects of your service and talk about           local Peace Corps recruitment office to
that process.                                  Tip No. 1: Respond to questions about             some of your secondary projects in HIV/          tell your story as part of a recruitment
                                               your service in brief, targeted sound             AIDS, even if you weren’t a health Vol-          event—there are nine regional recruiting
Scenario: You’re at some social event—or       bites: two to four short, compelling              unteer. Remember, your sound bites are           offices throughout the U.S., so there are
in the bank, in the elevator, or wherever      sentences, maybe fewer. Perhaps start             a lure that can, if effectively utilized, draw   bound to be periodic recruiting events
else you might run into people who real-       off by acknowledging how difficult it             people in to your story and experiences.         scheduled for nearly every region of the
ize you just returned from Peace Corps.        is to reply concisely to that question:                Apply this same principle to the job        country.
Here comes the infamous question:              “Wow, it’s hard to put it into words how          interview. When someone asks about                    You might volunteer to be an RPCV
“Wow, so how was your Peace Corps              life-changing it was. I spent two years           an aspect of your service, respond with          guest speaker at a general information
experience?”                                   working in a rural village in Ecuador with        a concise answer that connects the               meeting, a recruitment event where
                                                                                                 skills you learned in Peace Corps with           folks interested in learning more about
                                                                                                 the skills necessary for the job for which       the Peace Corps gather together and talk
RPCV Career Conferences in D.C.                                                                  you’re interviewing. As you highlight
                                                                                                 your background, remember to work in
                                                                                                                                                  to a recruiter and/or returned Volun-
                                                                                                                                                  teer. To contact your local Peace Corps
If you would like more practice telling your story as a tool for finding employment,             stories from outside your Peace Corps            recruiting office, call 800.424.8580 and
consider attending a returned Peace Corps Volunteer (RPCV) career conference,                    service to show your diversity and range         press option “1.”
hosted by Peace Corps’ Returned Volunteer Services. Our 2010 conferences will take               of experiences (even if some were in                  We wish you success in the remain-
place February 9–12, May 11–14, and October 12–15 at the Peace Corps headquarters                college). You’ll come to see that the art        ing months of your service, encourage
in Washington, D.C. These four-day events include interactive sessions on network-               of interviewing really comes down to             you to go forth and conquer with these
ing, interviewing, resume writing, and opportunities to actually put into practice what          the art of storytelling (and I don’t mean        storytelling tips, and hope you will con-
you’ve learned while connecting with employers participating in the career fair. For             story weaving—make sure what you say             tact us to share your successes (rvs@
more information, visit                                                     is the truth.)                          Happy storytelling!

                                             Taking	Stock	with	Mr.	Sock

                                             Please Repeat After Me …
                                             our education Volunteers have experi-              ally pull my Chapstick out of my pocket
                                             enced similar circumstances. Instead of            and apply a bit to my lips. As I’m putting
                                             becoming frustrated, remind yourself               it away I look up to see the entire fam-              Agency News
                                             of your own struggles with learning the            ily gawking at me, half amused and half
                                             language of your host country. Afterall,           aghast. The moment passes awkwardly
                                             a few of our language facilitators who             and I eventually head to my room for
                                             taught you their local language often              the night. The next day, after the morn-
                                             had to play the role of Costello as well.          ing language session, I do the same thing       Volunteers Return to Madagascar
                                                  Research has shown that the best              and my LCF gives me a look:                     Peace Corps Volunteers returned to
                                             time to learn a foreign language is be-                  “In America, do you do this a lot?”       Madagascar on November 16. The first
                                             tween birth and age 7. While the Peace                   “Yeah, it’s pretty common.”               group of returning Volunteers includes 11
                                             Corps age limit precludes any of you                     “Do not do this in front of your fam-     individuals who previously served in the
                                             from being in that category, research-             ily. It will make it look like you are want-    country and four Peace Corps Response
peaCe Corps’ owN versioN of “Who’s on        ers are improving the technology that              ing to be a woman.”                             Volunteers. Seventy-five additional
first” plays out daily across the globe,     adults tend to use for language learning,                I’m blending right in.                    Volunteers are expected to follow them
with the Volunteer sometimes stepping        to make it more social and possibly tap                                                            within the next 10 months.
into the role of Lou Costello and stu-       brain circuitry that infants would use.                 On a similar note, a returned Vol-              The program was temporarily sus-
dents serving as a collective Bud Abbott.         Noting that baby brains need per-             unteer from Kenya spoke at a gather-            pended last March due to security con-
     The challenges of learning a new        sonal interaction to soak in a new lan-            ing to celebrate National Peace Corps           cerns after anti-government protests
language can be felt by both student         guage, scientists in Japan have helped             Week last year.                                 and looting that had taken place since
and teacher alike.                           develop a computer language program                     Annette Hynes of Massachusetts             last January.
     One of the methods used in teach-       that pictures people speaking in “moth-            served four years in Kenya. In the vil-
ing spoken English is to depend on           erese,” the slow exaggeration of sounds            lage where she worked it was custom             RPCV, Recruiter
repetition of basic sentences, with key      that parents use with babies.                      for the elders to give their blessing to        a ‘Jeopardy’ Champion
words for substitution provided by the            While you don’t have the benefit of           those who are younger by spitting on            “I’ll take Peace Corps countries for
teacher. In this way, we hope, the stu-      such a program, the second-best thing              them. Hynes said she was disappointed           $5,000, Alex!”
dents master English grammar. To start,      is right next door. Just ask that neigh-           after being there 2½ years and not be-               OK, that wasn’t a “Jeopardy” cat-
we may ask them to substitute words in       bor to speak a little slower and observe           ing spit upon even once. When an el-            egory during returned Peace Corps Vol-
only one position in the sentence. For       his or her mouth movements.                        derly woman finally gave her the honor,         unteer Jennifer McFann’s run on the
instance: This is a chair. Door. This is a                                                      she said, “I was so happy.”                     primetime quiz show, but it may as well
door. Table. This is a table.                Pucker up!                                              Mr. Sock would venture to guess            have been. Showing her command of
     Unfortunately, even this method         In addition to language, cultural differ-          that she wouldn’t be as enthused if that        several categories, McFann won $19,410
doesn’t always go as planned. Consider       ences can also be a source of embarrass-           had happened in Boston!                         as a contestant on the show that aired
the following dialogue that was pulled       ment or misunderstanding. Mr. Sock                                                                 October 21.
from a 1962 issue of Peace Corps Times:      found the following blog from Morocco              ‘Auld Lang Syne’
                                             Volunteer Nathaniel Krause (2009–                  Should auld acquaintance be forgot,
Teacher: This is a chair.                    2011) amusing. It was written during                  and never brought to mind?
Students: (Echo) This is a chair.            the Islamic month of Ramadan, when                 Should auld acquaintance be forgot,
Teacher: Mango                               Muslims fast from sunrise to sunset.                  and auld lang syne?
Students: This is a mango.
Teacher: Table                               My family does not seem to sleep. They eat              While the famous Scottish poem
Students: This is a table.                   l-ftar [the evening meal to break the fast],       that was set to a traditional folk song
Teacher: That                                have dinner around 11–12 p.m. ( by which           questions whether old times should be
Students: This is a that.                    point I’ve gone to bed), and have another          forgotten, the song is generally inter-
Teacher: No, think please.                   meal before sunrise, between 3 a.m. and 4          preted as a call to remember long stand-        “Jeopardy” host Alex Trebek with
Student A: This is a think please.           a.m., which is signified by people banging         ing friendships.                                New York Regional Recruitor Jennifer
Teacher: No, a thousand times no.            drums in the street, often directly outside             It is in that spirit that we ask, as you   McFann (RPCV/Georgia) during a
(Pause)                                      of my window. The first time that hap-             say goodbye to 2009, that you take the          September filming of the show.
Very Bright Student: That is a table.        pened I thought I was dying. Anyway, they          time to reflect upon all you have accom-
Teacher: Ah! Correct … Eye.                  are already up at 7:30 when I get up to            plished and the many friends you’ve                 McFann has worked for Peace
Student B: I is a table.                     prepare for the day’s [language] sessions.         made overseas. Here’s looking to an             Corps in the New York regional office
Student C: I am a table.                          So the other night after l-ftar we’re         even more successful 2010!                      since October 2008 and is responsible
    Sound familiar? I’m sure many of         lounging around, being full, when I casu-                                                                   continued on page 5

continued from page 3                        good Samoa). My life is entirely differ-                For example, my program takes my           come. For those truly successful, that
ditional tattooists inking other Volun-      ent, but despite leaving everything be-            love for street art and brings it to a com-     includes creating programs that can run
teers with a hammer and nail. Finally,       hind, sound does travel.                           munity level to address the growing is-         on their own so our efforts can be put
my mod fashion has become colorful                For my Peace Corps service, I want-           sue of waste. Samoans are amazing art-          toward another cause. As a Peace Corps
waist wraps that say, “Sekia Samoa” (all     ed to bring a set of skills to Samoa that          ists so my program involves giving waste        Volunteer, my goal remains the same, as
                                             inspire and influence. The approach can            bins to student artists and turning an or-      I can and want to address more issues.
                                             be unconventional, but it’s part of my             dinary bin into art. It’s my version of Sa-     As I complete my first year of service,
                                             music culture.                                     moan street art that will increase waste        I have another year to find out if I will
                                                                                                awareness. Its simplicity and difference        succeed or fail. Will everything I do be
                                             Volunteer Joey Carmelo (2008–2010)                 will inspire and influence.                     a waste or will it continue to inspire and
                                             introduced a new version of street                      With everything I learned in mu-           influence?
                                             art to his community in Somoa, helping             sic and in Samoa, one similar goal re-
                                             his students turn ordinary trash bins              mains—sustainability. Most people who           Joey Carmelo is a small business Volun-
                                             into art.                                          work in music are self-employed so we           teer from San Francisco. He is scheduled
                                                                                                have to find a sustainable source of in-        to complete his service in August 2010.

                                              notes from the field
                                                                      A Brief Look at Posts and Projects
COSTA RICA                                    GUATEMALA                                             The Volunteers will work on proj-     UKRAINE
A Clean Show of Hands                         PCV’s Work Spurs                                 ects in 20 Philippine provinces and join   PCVs Renew Leadership Camp
Community economic development Vol-           Action Plan                                      130 Peace Corps Volunteers currently       A youth leadership training program was
unteer Brianna del Castillo (2009–2011)       A mountaintop village with limited               serving in the Philippines.                renewed through the efforts of teaching
and youth development Volunteer Jon           transportation had witnessed several                  Volunteer Suzanne Hicks of Tam-       English as a foreign language Volunteer
Skaggs (2009–2011) left their hand-           deaths related to child birth, encour-           pa, Florida, added, “When Secretary        Dr. Frank Kersting (2008–2010), his
prints in Costa Rica during Global Hand-      aging health Volunteer Anne Ballard              Clinton spoke to us, it struck me that     counterpart at the Kryvoy Rog Institute
washing Day on October 15.                    (2008–2010) to take action.                      the tradition of service crosses a broad   of Economics, and nine other Volunteers.
    The Volunteers showed primary                 Ballard worked with the health               spectrum. It does not matter if you are        Camp LEAD is built upon its ac-
school students a video about hygiene,        center staff, with support from local            the leader of a great nation, a famous     ronym, with a focus on leadership,
taught them a song, and conducted             midwives, to form a club for pregnant            person or a Volunteer–the call to ser-     English, activities to encourage civic
various activities intended to encour-        women. Club leaders teach others to              vice is for all of us to answer.”          engagement, and development of per-
age proper handwashing. The activities        adopt an emergency action plan based                  Peace Corps/Philippines is the        sonal goals. It was funded by Peace
were so popular that they were expand-        upon storing money, knowing where                agency’s third oldest program.             Corps for many reasons, one being the
ed from a kindergarten class to first-        a phone is, and finding someone in the                                                      creation of a Student Leadership Ad-
grade students throughout the school.         community with a vehicle.                        ROMANIA                                    visory Council (SLAC). As a result of
                                                  “The women leave knowing that                Vice President Meets                       SLAC meetings, the camp was marketed
                                              good mothering starts the moment you             Staff, Volunteers                          based on an advertising campaign that
                                              get pregnant, that their child’s health is       Vice President Joe Biden met with three    saw registrations grow to include over
                                              in their hands, and most importantly             Peace Corps/Romania Volunteers and         100 participants.
                                              that they will be wonderful mothers,”            three staff members on October 22 as
                                              Ballard says. She also promotes healthy          part of his visit to Bucharest, Roma-
                                              practices and has formed a children’s            nia. U.S. Ambassador Mark Gitenstein
                                              health prevention class.                         invited Peace Corps to participate in
                                                                                               a meet-and-greet activity at his home
                                              MOROCCO                                          with other members of the U.S. Mission
                                              Service Held for Volunteer                       in Romania.
Volunteer Jon Skaggs (2009–2011)              A memorial service was held on No-                    “Vice President Biden’s speech was
and students at a school in Costa             vember 21 in Rabat for Peace Corps               a stirring reminder of the sacrifices of
Rica provide a show of hands after            Volunteer So-Youn Kim, who died                  our families and friends at home who
exercising clean handwashing practices.       unexpectedly on November 16 after be-            endure their own hardships due to our
                                              coming ill. So-Youn, 23, recently entered        serving as Peace Corps Volunteers,”        Teaching English as a foreign language
ETHIOPIA                                      her second year as a youth development           said community economic develop-           Volunteer Molly Smith (2008–2010)
Garden Inspires Inmates                       Volunteer in Tamegroute, a small village         ment Volunteer Chris Fontanesi of San      leads activities at a youth leadership
Health Volunteer Jessica Ducey ’s             in southeast Morocco. A native of San            Diego (2007–2010).                         training program in Ukraine. A former
(2007–2009) vegetable farm isn’t just         Francisco, she graduated from Stanford                Country Director Ken Goodson          Florida State University media
feeding inmates, it’s educating them          University in 2007 and began her service         added, “There are few moments as           instructor, Smith also produced a daily
about nutrition, training them in agricul-    in September of 2008.                            proud as those when I have the opportu-    newspaper that was popular with camp
ture, and providing a source of income.            Volunteers from all project sectors,        nity to present Peace Corps Volunteers     participants.
     In addition to adults, a prison facil-   staff, U.S. Embassy personnel, and U.S.          to leaders of the countries we serve and
ity in central Ethiopia houses 17 vulner-     Ambassador Samuel Kaplan attended                those representatives of United States
able children whose parents or care-          the service, where words of So-Youn’s            public office that make our agency pos-

givers are incarcerated and unable to         impact were shared.                              sible. Vice President Biden’s enthusi-
provide adequate nutritional support. A            Country director David Lillie stat-         asm and interest in our Volunteers was     peace
one-acre garden on the prison grounds         ed, “We can all take comfort that we had         an extraordinary moment of pride.”         corps
has been funded by Volunteer Activities       the opportunity to know So-Youn and
                                                                                                                                          A publication for Peace Corps Volunteers
Support and Training (VAST) with the          that we will always carry her memory
                                                                                                                                                     serving worldwide
help of Ducey to bridge that gap. HIV/        with us. I will leave you with some words
AIDS prevention education has also            she sent me in a letter two months ago,                                                      Staff
been conducted.                               which I think summarizes her beauty                                                          Mark Huffman            Editor/Writer
                                              very well: ‘I believe in the power of the
                                                                                                                                           Kristen Fernekes    Design and Layout
                                              day to day, the simple yet otherwise im-
                                                                                                                                           Juan Carlos Polanco      Illustrations
                                              possible conversations, the truths that
                                              I speak and live that affect the people
                                              around me as I learn from the truths                                                         We welcome all Volunteer submissions
                                              around me, in turn.’”                                                                        and suggestions. Contact us at:
                                                                                               Visiting with Vice President Biden                        Peace Corps Times
                                              PHILIPPINES                                      in Bucharest, from left, are Country                c/o Office of Communications
                                              Clinton Swears in Volunteers                     Director Ken Goodson; Volunteer                            Paul D. Coverdell
                                              Secretary of State Hillary Rodham                                                                      Peace Corps Headquarters
                                                                                               and Anchorage, Alaska, native Tory
                                                                                                                                                        1111 20th Street, NW
                                              Clinton swore in 63 new Philippines              Shanklin; Vice President Biden;
                                                                                                                                                       Washington, DC 20526
Aspiring gardeners till the soil in central   Volunteers at the U.S. Embassy in Ma-            Volunteer and Birmingham, Mich.,                                or email
Ethiopia. Volunteer Jessica Ducey             nila on November 13. Secretary Clinton           native Susan Safford; Program and            
(2007–2009) helped secure funding             addressed the new Volunteers and                 Training Officer Betsy Vegso; Volunteer
for a one-acre garden on the prison           was joined by U.S. Ambassador Kristie            and San Diego, Ca., native Chris
grounds.                                      Kenney and Country Director Sonia                Fontanesi; and Administrative Officer                     FPO FSC logo
                                              Derenoncourt.                                    Craig Reeves.

                                                   That	Was	Then	…	This	is	Now
                                                   Program Enjoys a Rich History
                                                                 In a village of 60 people, a Volunteer trying to          Now	…	Peace	Corps		
                                                           build a bridge or school with voluntary labor soon
                                                           wears out his welcome, and the self-help dries up be-           Returns	to	Sierra	Leone
                                                           fore the project is completed. After much experiment-
                                                           ing, the Volunteers themselves arrived at a successful          On November 2, United States and Sierra Leone gov-
                                                           formula: each Volunteer undertook projects in several           ernment officials signed an agreement to re-establish
                                                           villages simultaneously, spending a morning here, an            a Peace Corps program in the African country after a
                                                           afternoon there, the next day somewhere else, his vis-          16-year absence.
                                                           its timed to when his presence was required for either               The Peace Corps first entered the country in 1962,
                                                           technical assistance or organizational help.                    but civil war interrupted the program. Since 1962, the
T he peaCe C orps eNJoys a riCh hisTory in Sierra                Since this sort of schedule requires high mobility,       West African country has hosted over 3,400 Peace
Leone, having initially arrived in 1962—just over a year   the Sierra Leone government donated seven Land-                 Corps Volunteers.
after it had declared independence. Volunteers served      Rovers to the Volunteers and provides fuel and main-                 “We are delighted that the government of Sierra
the country in consecutive years until 1994, when the      tenance for the vehicles. By the time the original rural        Leone has invited Peace Corps Volunteers to return
program was closed. Until that departure, 3,479 Volun-     development group completed their tours last spring,            and work shoulder to shoulder with the people of Si-
teers had served in agriculture, education, and health.    this system had been highly structured and functioned           erra Leone,” said Peace Corps Director Aaron S. Wil-
                                                           smoothly. Too smoothly, in fact, as their Group V re-           liams. “The partnership between Peace Corps and
                                                           placements felt a lack of challenge. Also, their very           Sierra Leone was established in the era of President
Then	…	Early	Volunteers	                                   mobility deprived them of close, meaningful relation-           Kennedy and it is an honor and a privilege for us to
                                                           ships in the villages. To offset this, a few Volunteers         have the opportunity to work with the communities of
Leave	Imprint                                              began probing into smaller, more personal projects in           Sierra Leone once again.”
                                                           addition to the “high impact” ones.                                  The first group of approximately 40 Volunteers is
From The Peace Corps Times in 1965,                              They are teaching villagers to make toys and fur-         scheduled to arrive in the country in June, with addi-
written by then-Country Director, Donovan McClure          niture, promoting improved methods of agriculture               tional Peace Corps Response Volunteers also arriving
                                                           and delving into public health problems.                        in 2010. Volunteers will focus on secondary education
Teaching, as elsewhere in Africa, has high priority, and         The impact made by rural development Volun-               in public schools and work together with communi-
while we’ve functioned so far only in the secondary        teers can be seen and touched. Teachers sometimes               ties on grassroots initiatives and community develop-
schools and training colleges, next fall two dozen or so   fail to see results. If they could read the correspon-          ment.
Volunteers will teach in the primary schools.              dence that comes across my desk from headmasters
     A medical team of two Volunteer doctors and           and ministry officials, they would not be troubled.
eight nurses transformed a small up-country hospital             Headmasters like the fact Peace Corps teachers
into a medical facility that attracted patients from all   are friendly and work hard and teach classes when
over Sierra Leone. Unfortunately, doctors could not        they’re supposed to; that they organize the libraries,
be recruited for a new team and the program was ter-       coach the athletic teams, direct the choirs, tutor the
minated last July.                                         dull students, monitor the evening study halls, and
     The first Peace Corps-CARE rural development          spend their weekends and vacations painting, plant-
Volunteers arrived here in October, 1962, and that         ing, plastering, and cementing. But what they like
program has come almost full circle–commencing as          most of all, more than the go-go spirit and cheerful
“pure” community development, evolving into self-          faces, even more than the projectors and tape record-
help construction (bridges, market roads, jetties) and     ers and wall maps and science kits that are the trap-
now, by degrees, returning to “semi-pure” commu-           pings of each Volunteer teacher, what they like more
nity development at the village level. The first stage–    than that is the number, the ever increasing number,
“pure” community development–was frustrating to            of students taught by Peace Corps Volunteers who
both the Volunteers and Sierra Leoneans. The Latin         pass the third- and fifth-form exams. This is where the
America-style community development simply didn’t          payoff is, to students and headmasters alike. This is           A Peace Corps Volunteer teaches students in Sierra
work here. The villages were too small, the population     the battle they gear for, and the Volunteers have done,         Leone in 1980. Peace Corps is returning to the
too scattered, and the social structure too limited.       and are doing, a good job preparing them for it.                country after a 16-year absence.

continued from page 4                       of helping U.S. schoolchildren better           the oldest serving Peace Corps Volunteer.           “On behalf of the entire Peace Corps,
for recruiting in western Pennsylva-        understand and appreciate diverse cul-               Johnston, 85, serves as a health Vol-    it is an honor to be invited by the Repub-
nia. She served as an English teacher in    tures and world issues, WWS hosted a            unteer in southern Morocco. Clinton           lic of Indonesia to cooperate on Peace
Georgia during her Volunteer service        conference, “Educating For a Flattened          said she had learned about Johnston at a      Corps service opportunities in Indone-
(2006–2008).                                World,” October 15–16 at Peace Corps            meet-and-greet session of U.S. Embassy        sian communities,” said Peace Corps Di-
     A longtime fan of “Jeopardy,” Mc-      headquarters in Washington, D.C.                officials and other Americans when she        rector Aaron S. Williams. “I share Presi-
Fann was also a member of the College           Over 100 U.S.-based educators,              arrived in Morocco.                           dent Obama’s commitment to increase
Bowl at New York University where she       leaders, and representatives from differ-            “It’s a great reminder that in Amer-     education and public service opportuni-
honed her skills in speech and debate.      ent organizations attended the confer-          ica in the 21st century, there are not only   ties around the world. I look forward to
She auditioned online for Jeopardy in       ence, which focused on incorporating            second acts, there’s third acts and fourth    working with our Indonesian partners
January 2009 and was invited to an in-      global issues into classrooms.                  acts and fifth acts–if you’re ready to em-    with the Ministry of National Education
person interview five months later. She         To learn more, and to access re-            brace new challenges,” Clinton said.          and Ministry of Religious Affairs on edu-
flew to Los Angeles for filming on Sep-     sources offered through World Wise                                                            cation and teacher training initiatives.”
tember 23, easily beating her closest       Schools, visit the Peace Corps website at       Indonesia Newest
competitor before finishing as runner-                             Peace Corps Program                           Applicant Numbers Grow
up during an attempt to defend her title.                                                   U.S. and Republic of Indonesia govern-        Peace Corps recruited 15,386 applicants
                                            Clinton Recognizes                              ment officials signed an agreement on         in fiscal year 2009. This represents the
World Wise Schools                          Morocco Volunteer                               December 11 to create a Peace Corps           largest amount of applications since the
Celebrates 20th Year                        During a recent international conference        program in Indonesia. Incoming Country        agency began electronically recording
In honor of Peace Corps’ Coverdell World    in Morocco, U.S. Secretary of State Hill-       Director Ken Puvak represented Peace          applications in 1998 and is an 18 percent
Wise Schools’ (WWS) 20th anniversary        ary Clinton recognized Muriel Johnston,         Corps at the signing.                         increase from fiscal year 2008.