|By Henry G Loeser (radiodog) on Tuesday, May 21, 2002 - 8:57 pm: Edit Post|
In his review of the new Peace Corps legislation, Ken Hill mentions "the painful lessons learned from the expansion into Eastern Europe".
What painful lessons?
Czech Republic 93-96
|By Admin1 (admin) on Tuesday, May 21, 2002 - 9:33 pm: Edit Post|
Take a look at the Report on the Peace Corps in Eastern Europe written by the General Accounting Office (GAO) in December, 1994. There is a copy on the web at:
Here's the synposis from the Report:
Results in Brief
The Peace Corps has comprehensive, sound written procedures for planning, introducing, and implementing new programs and preparing volunteers for entry into countries around the world. However, in its eagerness to meet the mission set out by the President and the Congress to help the former Eastern bloc countries, the Peace Corps truncated or overrode its normal procedures and launched programs prematurely. As a result, the Peace Corps faced serious difficulties that limited the programs' effectiveness in those countries. The four programs we examined (Poland, Bulgaria, Russia, and Uzbekistan) had very difficult beginnings. The programs were poorly designed, and volunteers did not receive the guidance, support, or well conceived assignments they were led to expect. The Peace Corps suffered a high rate of staff turnover and early returns of volunteers. As a result, the programs' developmental impact in these countries was impaired.
Peace Corps officials acknowledged the problems and have taken actions designed to overcome them; however, it is too soon to determine how effective these actions will be.
The Peace Corps programs in the former Eastern bloc were not undertaken at the expense of programs in other regions. Funding and staffing in other countries did not appear to be affected by the new programs.