..........A. CONGRESSMAN SAM FARR DISCUSSES NEW PC LEGISLATION
The most important legislation affecting the Peace Corps in the last twenty years is going to be introduced into Congress in the next 30 days. PCOL obtained a draft copy of the legislation and discussed it with one of the architects of the new bill in an exclusive extended interview with Congressman Sam Farr of California.
Read the draft legislation, read our interview with Sam Farr where we raise the questions that have been posted on our Message Boards, and read our op-ed pieces by RPCVs commenting on the legislation. This is a must-read for anyone interested in the future of the Peace Corps. You won't get this reporting or analysis on Peace Corps issues anywhere else.
..........B. RPCVS ANALYZE THE PROPOSED LEGISLATION
In addition to the interview we have three op-ed pieces on the new Peace Corps legislation written by RPCVs: The first op-ed piece is by RPCV Ken Hill. Mr. Hill is a former Chief of Staff at Peace Corps Headquarters with a long career in government who brings an insider's view of the legislation. His point for point analysis of the legislation explains in laymen's terms what each part of the bill means and what the implications are for the Peace Corps. Read this op-ed piece at:
The next op-ed, written by RPCV Joanne Roll, discusses Sargent Shriver's 4th goal for the Peace Corps and the issue of an RPCV organization that will dispense grants to RPCVs and raises questions about how this will work. Read her op-ed at:
The last op-ed, written by RPCV Colin Gallagher, discusses proposed langauge that can be added to the bill to ensure Peace Corps' independence from the intelligence gathering community. Mr. Gallagher is well known to readers of PCOL for his previous op-eds on the dangers to Peace Corps independence from the USA Patriot Act.
..........C. THE CASE FOR PEACE CORPS INDEPENDENCE
"For Peace Corps veterans the Bush administration's plan to consolidate several volunteer programs into a new office of volunteer activity named the USA Freedom Corps calls to mind the well-worn responses of 'been there, done that,' and 'deja vu all over again'" writes former Peace Corps Deputy Director David Searles in this exclusive op-ed piece on previous attempts to merge the Peace Corps at:
..........D. DIRECTOR VASQUEZ DISCUSSES USA FREEDOM CORPS
Director Gaddi Vasquez met with RPCV leaders in San Francisco and discussed the three goals that he sees as a priority for the Peace Corps, his view on the USA Freedom Corps and what it is meant to be, and Peace Corps independence. Read this exclusive report from Norcal President Chuck Morganson on a RPCV leader's meeting with Director Vasquez at:
Last month RPCVs wrote their own captions to our Peace Corps Cartoon. See what they came up with - and compare it to the original caption. Take a look at our cartoon for this month - Culture Shock - and come up with your own caption for it
..........B. PEACE CORPS CELEBRATES TEN YEARS IN UKRAINE
The Peace Corps has been in the Ukraine for ten years now. Read this story written for the Kiev Times. Anyone who is interested in current trends in Peace Corps programming will want to read this article about the new techniques Peace Corps uses in training which have the volunteer drop-out rates down to an all time low.
The Baltic Times takes a look at the completion of the Peace Corps mission in Lativa, Lithuania, and Estonia. The Peace Corps Press office reports that the official graduation ceremonies will be held in mid-June.
..........D. RPCV VICKI HUDDLESTON IS TOP US DIPLOMAT IN CUBA
Peru RPCV Vicki Huddleston was on CNN last Saturday morning. She is the highest ranking US diplomat in Cuba. There was a long and interesting interview by Kate Snow in Havana with her on the CNN Saturday Edition show. Read all about this RPCV Diplomat at:
..........F. VASQUEZ TO MEET WITH RPCVS IN BOSTON AND CHICAGO
Peace Corps Director Gaddi Vasquez plans to meet with RPCV leaders in Boston in late May, then travel to Chicago to give the keynote address for the Chicago Returned Volunteers (CAPCA) annual fund raiser on June 1.
..........G. PEACE CORPS WEB SITE NOMINATED FOR TOP HONORS
The Webby Awards, the leading international honors for Web sites, has nominated the Peace Corps Web site for a Webby Award in the category of Best Practices. Our congratulations to Peace Corps and to Three Spot Media.
There have been many posts by RPCVs in the last month commenting on previous stories PCOL has posted. Be sure and take a look at what RPCVs had to say about the following stories:
..........A. PEACE CORPS BASKS IN THE SPOTLIGHT
There has been a resurgence of interest in the Peace Corps after the President's pledge to double the size of the Peace Corps. Requests for applications are up 77 percent.
But Bush’s emphasis on expanding Peace Corps service to more countries in the Islamic world has provoked concern about whether the administration is attempting to alter the mission of the organization. The Peace Corps says no. What do you say?
..........B. DIRECTOR VASQUEZ MEETS WITH RPCVS IN LOS ANGELES
PC Director Gaddi Vasquez traveled to California on April 19 to speak at a Latino Youth Convention in Orange County, to present the LA County Volunteer of the Year Award, and to meet with local RPCVs. PCOL was there with our Special Correspondent for Southern California. Read what the Director had to say in his first meeting with RPCVs at:
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