Fifty years and counting

March 1, 1961: President Kennedy announced the signing of the executive order and the formation of the Peace Corps at a national press conference.

My favorite part of his announcement —

“Life in the Peace Corps will not be easy. There will be no salary and allowances will be at a level sufficient only to maintain health and meet basic needs. Men and women will be expected to work and live alongside the nationals of the country in which they are stationed—doing the same work, eating the same food, talking the same language.

“But if the life will not be easy, it will be rich and satisfying. For every young American who participates in the Peace Corps—who works in a foreign land—will know that he or she is sharing in the great common task of bringing to man that decent way of life which is the foundation of freedom and a condition of peace.”

To date:

-50 years

-More than 200,000 volunteers

-139 countries served

Check out this forum, sponsored by NPR, about the past, present and future of PC (click on download audio).  Interesting stuff.

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1 Response to Fifty years and counting

  1. Steve Pierce says:

    Hey Krista Lou – It has been a while since I commented on your posts. I continue to be so very proud of you and what you are doing. The Peace Corps is definitely having a profound impact on you and the way you view the world. I have met some Peace Corps workers in the past; people who crossed my path and intersected only briefly in my life. You are the first person close to my heart that is a part of the Peace Corps, and i am a better person for: 1) knowing you and being a part of you life, and 2) seeing the impact serving in the Peace Corps has on you. I know you are very happy and you should be proud to be a part of the statistics that you cited in your most recent post. Just think of all the faces and hearts, hands and feet, lives and souls that are behind those numbers. YOU are part of that!!

    Much love Krista,
    Mrt. P

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