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San Diego Peace Corps Association Newsletter

September - October 2003 -- V olume 16, Number 5


 

A Modest Proposal

What Outreach Project Inspires You?
SDPCA: VIsion & Mission Revised President's Message: Being Inspired

Board Minutes-July & August

SDPCA & PC News Bytes

"Thanks SDPCA," from Award Winners

Potpourri

Recruitment Corner

New Members

Newsletter Credits


Editor newseditor@sdpca.org

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A Modest Proposal

[In light of so many happenings in the world political arena—from peace efforts to terrorism and pre-emptive wars, from years of Peace Corps Volunteer successes to retooling the Peace Corps as a means to “spread American values”—it seems that many of us as RPCVS are clarifying more than ever, HOW to “bring it all back home.” This letter was written to all RPCVs by RPCV John Coyne (Ethiopia 1962–1964) for our consideration. Please read it, consider it and share in discussion as we work for a world of Peace—ed]

August 13, 2003

Dear RPCVs:

On the first weekend of August, I attended the Annual General Meeting of the National Peace Corps Association (NPCA) in sunny bright Portland, Oregon.

Peace Corps Writers held two workshops on Peace Corps writing, presented a reading by Sarah Erdman, who served in Cote d’Ivoire, from her wonderful new book, Nine Hills to Nambonkaha: Two Years in the Heart of an African Village, and announced the winners of the Peace Corps Writers books awards of 2003.

About 225 Returned Peace Corps Volunteers (RPCVs) attended this weekend conference, which was also the annual meeting of the NPCA and featured a farewell dinner for the outgoing President and CEO of the NPCA, Dane Smith, and the introduction of Kevin Quigley, the new president of our alumnae group. Kevin was a Peace Corps Volunteer in Thailand from 1976–79.
The purpose of this email is to ask for your help in ‘saving’ the NPCA by helping Kevin Quigley and the NPCA. I believe strongly that the organization needs a new vision and a new direction, and that if we don’t help the NPCA now it will slip away into history. But first, a little history.

The First RPCV Conference
The first RPCV Conference I attended was in 1965, held at the U.S. State Department, less than a year after I returned from Ethiopia. At the time only 3,000 Volunteers had returned from the developing world. The Conference, which was put on by the Peace Corps, was called “Citizens in a Time of Change” and was held on the weekend of March 1, the organization’s fourth anniversary. Its purpose was to discuss the RPCVs’ role in national life.

At the time, President Johnson was building a “Great Society” and declared that “a Great Society requires first of all Great Citizens, and the Peace Corps is a world-wide training school for Great Citizens.” There were lots of misgivings among the Peace Corps staff in Washington about convening RPCVs in Washington. They knew Volunteers had come home with critical opinions about American’s role in the world, the agency itself, and the Vietnam War. Many conservative PC/Washington types thought that inviting RPCVs to Washington to “sound off” within the hearing distance of congress and the national news media was asking for trouble.

Peace Corps Director Sargent Shriver, naturally, had greater faith in RPCVs. He believed the Peace Corps agency could “learn from the Volunteers’ reflections after they had been home for a while.” So we came to Washington. In fact, over a thousand of the 3,000 Returned Peace Corps Volunteers came to Foggy Bottom and the State Department to meet with over 250 leaders of American society. Everyone who was there will long remember Vice-President Humphrey linking arms with Harry Belafonte, Chief Justice Earl Warren, Secretary of State Dean Rusk, Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara, Shriver, and all the RPCVs to sing “We Shall Overcome” in the stately State Department auditorium.

That night Humphrey urged us to get involved. “You don’t really have to save the world,” he told us, “just start saving the hometown.” We left D.C. thinking we could do both.

The 20th Reunion at Howard University
On the 20th anniversary of the Peace Corps, the Washington, D.C. RPCV group organized a weekend gathering at Howard University that was a great celebration of the early years of the agency and featured a stirring speech by Shriver and the introduction of the new Peace Corps Director, Loret Miller Ruppe who proved over time, (in spite of her limited overseas experience) to be a worthy director.

The 25th Anniversary Celebration
The largest gathering of RPCVs took place in 1986 when 5,000 of us again went to Washington, D.C. where the 25th anniversary of the Peace Corps was celebrated inside the largest tent ever raised on The Mall, at the foot of the Capitol Dome and adjacent to the Air and Space Museum. The 25th Anniversary Celebration was the idea of RPCV Bill Carey, and four RPCV groups who came together under one banner to host an event which made headline news across the country, a great gathering of the “clan.”
Once again staffers at the Peace Corps agency were against the gathering, fearing that RPCVs would march on President Reagan’s White House. However, when Loret Ruppe realized it was going to happen whether she liked it or not, she elbowed her way into the planning and staged a show on Sunday evening at the Kennedy Center when once again Harry Belafonte led the ‘clan’ in singing “We Shall Overcome.”

Earlier that Sunday Loret joined with Shriver, Moyers, and all of us at Arlington Cemetery for a moving memorial service honoring the Volunteers who had died in service.

The Founding of the NCRPCV
After the success of that wonderful weekend, those four groups of RPCVs established the National Council of Returned Peace Corps Volunteers (NCRPCV). Roger Landrum, a major force in creating the Conference, called for RPCVs to unite behind this new national forum. “If 10,000 of you will join the National Council,” he told us, “we’ll have a sustainable financial base. We can hire a staff, rent an office, and build a solid organization to develop our programs.”

Close to 16,000 of the Peace Corps community of RPCVs and staff, numbering around 120,000 at that time, did join together in those happy days after the gathering on the Mall. Many of us believed that a forceful alumni group of RPCVs would, as Sargent Shriver urged us, “Work at home as you have worked abroad, humbly, persistently, intelligently.”

The National Council of Returned Peace Corps Volunteers did have great dreams: publish a magazine that would tell about the world from an RPCV perspective, aid teachers in teaching about the developing world, pursue peace initiatives, and build a network of RPCV groups across the country.

In time, the NCRPCV changed its name to the National Peace Corps Association (NPCA). The organization has hosted conferences every year—in Eugene, Oregon (where the best Conference ever was held), in Kent State, back in Washington, D.C. and almost everywhere in between. Next year, in 2004, the conference will be held in Chicago. That is, if there is a next year, and if there is an NPCA. And that is the real point of this email.

The Point
At the moment RPCVs have a membership organization without many members. The NPCA as an organization has slipped downhill since it began as a grass roots movement, one that briefly flowered, and is now, (to mix up all my metaphors), withering on the vine.

What has happened since those glory days of 1965? Then President Johnson wrote to the Vice President saying, “The Peace Corps has made history,” and called RPCVs “a major new national resource.” Last year, at the 40+1 Anniversary of the agency less than 1,000 RPCVs (out of some 200,000 RPCVs and Staff) traveled to D.C. for the NPCA reunion. As an aging ’60s Volunteer myself, I was stuck by the lack of young faces and new voices from the newest generations of RPCVs.

Is the NPCA not providing appropriate services for the RPCVs to attract them to join the organization? What gives? RPCVs continue to—using Sarge’s words—serve, serve, serve.

It is impressive to read what some RPCVs are doing as individuals—without the help or need of an NPCA—to serve the RPCV community. A couple of quick examples:

  • Collin Tong (Thailand 1968–69) raised $40,000 from other RPCVs in a few weeks to run two ads in the New York Times urging a peaceful resolution to the crisis with Iraq.
  • Hugh Pickens (Peru 1971–73) has PeaceCorpsOnline.org which covers news, advocacy, and plenty of resources, and sends notice of new articles monthly to more than 35,000 RPCVs.
  • Marian Haley Beil (Ethiopia 1962–64) and I have published since 1989 a newsletter and now a bimonthly ezine--PeaceCorpsWriters.org--that promotes, encourages, and recognizes RPCVs doing a Third Goal activity with incredible impact--writing about their countries and their experience.

Why Join?
So why join the NPCA? What good does it do? What good does it do if you have such good people as Collin Tong and others doing the job themselves?

At the local level, at home, associating with a group in big cities like New York or San Francisco offers RPCVs a community of friends who shared a special experience and give RPCVs a chance to show their slides and sing their songs. Besides gathering for Ethiopian or Thai food, many of these local groups are doing valuable volunteer work in their communities. They are all impressive. But most of the members of these groups do not belong to the NPCA. Similar strength can be found in the RPCV groups formed around countries of service—and most of the members of these groups do not belong to the NPCA either.

So why hasn’t the national organization made a difference? Sixteen years after it was launched, the organization is in serious financial trouble, with a debt of some $100,000. None of this is new to anyone who has watched the NPCA grow and falter and keep struggling through the years. Here’s an organization that started on a shoestring—but the string has frayed. Through the years Tim Carroll, Lyn Gray, Chic Dambach, Dane Smith, and now, Kevin Quigley have worked to grow it in various ways. While we now have a network for teachers, Worldview magazine, 3/1/61 newsletter, advocacy efforts, and a few other national programs, the national organization limps along with a paying membership of around 11,000 out of a Peace Corps world of 200,000 plus. Why is that?
Why are there so few members at the national level?

An Easy Answer
It’s an easy answer. The NPCA does not (and you can pick any descriptive word): support, connect, relate, defend, help, assist, network, or promote individual RPCVs. The NPCA might look good on paper, and it can spin the accomplishments of individual members, but the NPCA is an empty suit. And as a lobbying group, we are not a factor inside the beltway or in the country. The reason we are not a “factor” is because we don’t take any position as a group on any issue, or if we take a position it sounds like we’re kindergarten kids, the recent statement on Iraq is a case in point. An organization that tries to embrace all the views of all the members is an organization that stands for nothing. How then do we make the NPCA effective?

How Do We Save It?
In the following ways:

  • Support PCVs and RPCVs in their individual needs, defending them against the Peace Corps when necessary
  • Retire the outstanding debt so Kevin Quigley has a chance to grow the NPCA. Contribute any among from $10 to $100 (or more), sending the check directly to Kevin and made out to the “NPCA”
  • Groups and locale organizations, those ‘deep pockets’ RPCVs, should contribute much more--1k or 2k or 5k
    --as individuals and groups will suffer if the national group dissolves
  • The NPCA must become an active overseer of the Peace Corps, not a wishy-washy group afraid to take stands against appointments and policies
  • Re-focus Wordview Magazine so that it is for and about PCVs and RPCVs, not what it cannot be, “a major voice in this country about the developing world in this country”
  • Re-design the RPCV website so that it is an interactive tool used by PCVs overseas and RPCVs here at home
  • Reduce the membership fee to $40
  • Change the function of the Board so that it is manageable
  • Create a Board that is financially able to support the NPCA, either personally or by fundraising, the way that most non-profits function
  • Require that all members of local groups also be members of the national organization
  • Eliminate the “free membership” of new RPCVs and seek ways to enroll PCVs while they are overseas, providing them a password to the website where they will get assistance from the NPCA, as well as career and graduate schools information
  • Hire a Career Counseling Staff person available for RPCVs as well as PCV
  • Develop an ‘Associate’ NPCA membership for the parents of PCVs—When an individual joins the Peace Corps, so does his/her family
  • Go into business with an international travel agency to provide useful travel assistance to RPCVs and families who wish to visit their children overseas
  • Create opportunities at the local level for Congress people to receive recognition from the NPCA for their support of the Peace Corps, ensuring that they recognize and realize that we are all voters.

These are just a few suggestions to turn the NPCA into a membership organization that is for members. Many RPCVs have expressed these and similar ideas for the organization. And I am sure there are more good ideas in the country that need to be voiced. The previous leadership of the NPCA has spent time and energy trying to wrestle with “worldly” problems, i.e., going to Israel to “examine the relevance of NPCA peace-building experience to the polarized situation between Israelis and Palestinians” instead of using that energy to build an organization with members who themselves will be empowered to pursue such activities.

Let’s forget for the moment about being players on the “world stage” and concentrate on developing a “membership” organization that (1) defends Volunteers; (2) performs oversight of the Peace Corps itself; and (3) supports the volunteer work being done by RPCVs here at home.

Let’s give Kevin Quigley and his staff a chance to build the NPCA. Begin by contributing money to retire the $100,000 debt. Give Kevin the breathing room needed to expand the NPCA into a true membership organization that provides services to its members. If all 11,000 members contributed, the NPCA debt can be erased.

Thank you for reading all of this.

I am sending this email on my own, as someone who believes that RPCVs need a membership organization, and as someone who since 1964 has been working to promote the Peace Corps and RPCVs. I ask that you send Kevin a check today. I also ask if you would be kind enough to forward this email onto your network of RPCVs; many are not members of the National Peace Corps Association—ask them to join—as we have something of value in the Returned Peace Corps Volunteer Community and we need to use it.

Let’s save the NPCA, and then we can save the world. Again, thank you for reading all of this.

Kevin’s Address: Kevin Quigley NPCA Suite 205 1900 L Street NW Washington, D.C. 20036

Sincerely,
--John Coyne (Ethiopia 1962–64) Editor http://peacecorpswriters.org/


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What Outreach Project Inspires You?

by Rudy Sovinee, (Ghana (1970-73)

What does the SDPCA mean to you? Are you primarily interested in socializing with other RPCVs and nominees? Do you maybe include in your picture of the SDPCA the idea that collectively, the experience and worldview of RPCVs might allow us to accomplish something that is greater than we’d individually accomplish?

I believe that action of the SDPCA can magnify our individual contributions to the community and world. Have doubts? Do you want to be inspired? Visit the NPCA page (http://www.rpcv.org) and follow the links to affiliate groups--to see what other RPCV groups are doing. Listed below are several SDPCA avenues that can make a difference. Each needs your participation!

The Speakers’ Bureau, which allows area classrooms and service groups’ access to RPCVs who can relate their experiences, is a way of educating San Diegans of our world. (speakers@sdpca.org)

Our Global Awards Program internationally allows us to support small village projects where SD PCVs are currently serving. We ask the Peace Corps to forward news of our outreach to PCVs from SD, but you can too.

Our Global Awards Program on its domestic side, as announced last issue, is a platform for honoring other local non-profits that are also educating San Diegans in ways that promote cross cultural, international understanding. It can also support smaller projects—like at schools—that are striving to meet these goals.

The committee members know of some projects to nominate (the Global School House, Victor Villasenor’s Snowgoose Festival, and the International Rescue Committee), but we need your nominations to amplify our outreach.

Which projects do you know? What projects might be uncovered if you ask your co-workers and friends? Sept. 30th is the deadline for this year’s nominations! (globalawards@sdpca.org)

The Community Action Committee of the SDPCA exists to find hands-on activities that we can do to make a difference in the community. Examples of such outreach includes: our participation at soup kitchens, beach clean-up, or a day with Habitat-for-Humanity. The current committee (Marjory Clyne, Ted Finkel, Sharon Kennedy, Rudy Sovinee and Xandra Garanzuay) believes that we better serve our membership and community when we identify and work long term with a project that is ours.

The question is how to find/define a project that leverages/ maximizes our background.

If you’d like to join with us in defining such a project, let us know by email to community@sdpca.org


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SDPCA Revised...

At the May 2003 general meeting of the SDPCA the following Vision and Mission statements were shared with the general assembly by the outgoing 2002 Board. The board had spent much discussion and debate over the phrasing of these statements, and felt they encapsulated the sentiments of the whole of our community. If you have an opinion, please let it be heard. communications@SDPCA.org

Vision Statement
San Diego Peace Corps Association is a nonprofit organization that brings together Returned Peace Corps Volunteers in our community to promote peace and understanding.

Mission Statement
The mission of SDPCA is to build and maintain an active membership of RPCVs, their families and friends; to support and inform RPCVs and local communities through social, educational and community service activities; to provide funding for Peace Corps Volunteers’ projects overseas; and to influence the direction of Peace Corps through advocacy.


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You see things and you say, "Why?"
But I dream things that never were, and I say.
"Why not?" --George Bernard Shaw

Being Inspired

I know there is often precious little to be inspired about, but I had the pleasure of being inspired while attending the NPCA Annual General Meeting and Presidents Forum in Portland, Oregon, August 1–3. This meeting allows members to hear updates from the Board of Directors and be involved in policy decisions in the years between the National Conferences. Some key ideas considered included changing the size of the board, and how to increase member participation in the advocacy issues of Peace Corps legislation, the environment, and world peace.

Congratulations go to SDPCA members, Brenda Terry Hahn, Jeffrey Cleveland, Don Beck and Joseph White. On Friday evening, these members were honored with the 1st place award for the SDPCA website, designed by Joseph White and updated by our own webmaster Don Beck; and with the 3rd place award for the newsletter, Pacific Waves, edited last year by Brenda Terry Hahn, with production/distribution by Jeffrey Cleveland and layout/design by Don Beck. It was my pleasant duty to represent our group in accepting these awards.

This meeting was the first public appearance of the new President of NPCA, Kevin Quigley (Thailand 76–79). He has had a long and illustrious career already in the non profit arena, specifically with the Pew Charitable Trusts and the Asia Society as two key parts of the experience he brings to the NPCA.

Another key speaker was Jody Olson, Deputy Director of Peace Corps. She informed us that there are 7,000 volunteers serving in 70 countries right now. Mr. Quigley then reminded us that we as the RPCV community are much bigger than that. There are 200,000 RPCVs and their families, 40,000 current and former staff and all our friends to add to that 7,000. Together we can do much to bring peace to this world.

That’s the inspiration I bring back to you. Let’s see what we can do together to continue to make a difference.
--Marjory Clyne, Western Samoa (1972–74), President SDCA


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Board Minutes: for July 7 and August 4, 2003

Marjory Clyne, David Fogelson, Nikol Shaw,
Ray Slanina, Cindy Ballard, Rudy Sovinee, and Barbara Casillas attended both meetings. Ted Finkel, Tony Starks, Brenda Terry-Hahn, and Frank Yates attended in July.

Minutes were approved as amended.

President’s Report: Marjory was SDPCA’s delegate to the Annual General Meeting and President’s Forum in Portland, OR, from August 1–3, where SDPCA’s website was presented with a 1st Place Award and the newsletter was presented with a 3rd Place Award. Kevin F.F. Quigley is the new NPCA President.
Rudy Sovinee will now be coordinating the Community Action committee.

Financial Report: Frank reported balances and provided a detailed statement of income and expenses.

Membership: The SDPCA membership is at
148 current, 42 past due, totaling 190. NPCA membership is at 103 current, 34 past due,
totaling 137.

Community Action: As the new leader of the Community Action committee, Rudy suggested SDPCA create an ongoing project related to the Peace Corps experience in lieu of tag-along projects with other organizations. He also pointed out that this is an excellent way to bring RPCVs together and enhance membership. The committee is open to ideas and brainstorming.

Fundraising: Information about the upcoming Entertainment book and Calendar fundraisers is covered in the newsletter, as well as information about a new cookbook fundraiser.

Global Awards: Deadline for nominations is
30 September.

Communications: Our next newsletter deadline is 10 October.
Social: Past and current activities are covered in newsletter stories.

Speaker’s Bureau: Dave has filled requests for 12 speakers.
Old Business: The Board accepted Tony Starks’ resignation as Vice President and Board Member with regrets. A motion was made to make Rudy Sovinee a Board Member and Vice President; the motion carried.

New Business: None.

Next Meeting: 6:30 PM, 8 September 2003, at the home of Barbara Casillas.


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News Bytes

Annual Fundraising Projects...

Fundraising is always “in season” and especially as we come into the fall and end of year. With thoughts of gifts and a new year approaching.

Entertainment Books ‘04
Entertainment books are back!
The price is still the same as last year ($40) and locations will be announced in the next newsletter. Put a few on your holiday shopping list for friends and family.

PC 2004 Calendars
With Entertainment Books now available, the Annual PC Calendars from Wisconsin PC Association can’t be far behind. Excellent gifts and always well loved by people who receive them! Plan to buy one for yourself as well as give as gifts!

Recipes From Round the World
Also, we want your Peace Corps recipes!

In a fund raising effort, we need your recipes from around the world. If possible, include the traditional recipe and one modified (if needed) that can be made from ingredients found in the local supermarket. Or some advice on where to obtain ingredients.

We want to make a book of all the recipes so that everyone can enjoy your favorite Peace Corps dishes!

Please submit to fundraising@sdpca.org
(or mail to P.O. Box 26565, San Diego, CA 92196-0565).

New SDPCA Vice President

Tony Starks was re-elected at the May annual meeting as Vice President, however personal commitments forced him to reluctantly resign at the July Board meeting. Rudy Sovinee was nominated and elected to fill the Vice President position. We thank Tony for his past service and wish Rudy the best.

Newsletter Editor Needed!

SDPCA still needs a volunteer to fill the Newsletter Editor position. Volunteers for social committee are also needed.
If you are interested, please contact any of the board members listed in Board Contacts.

New NPCA President

Kevin F. F. Quigley, a Returned Peace Corps Volunteer who served in Thailand from 1976–79, was named President of the National Peace Corps Association (NPCA) on July 14, 2003. Quigley contributes valuable experience in NGO fund raising and management, in the legislative and executive branches of government, and in education and advocacy, to the next generation of leadership of the RPCV community.

He is a graduate of Swarthmore College, University College of Dublin, and Columbia University. Quigley received a doctorate in comparative government from Georgetown University. Among his many honors, he has served as a Council on Foreign Relations international affairs fellow, a U.S.–Japan Leadership fellow, a guest scholar at the Woodrow Wilson Center for Scholars, and he has been a resident associate at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace.

NPCA 2003 Award Winners

2003 Shriver Award winner is Sue H. Patterson, founder of WINGS, RPCV Colombia and the 2003 Ruppe Award winner is The Colombia Project, RPCVs of South Florida.
To view the complete list of winners, visit their website http://www.rpcv.org


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From Tonner Award Recipients: “Thanks SDPCA!”

Saõ Domingos Library Committee
$290 to help furnish high school library
Saõ Domingos, Cape Verde

"Our Library Committee was very excited to receive your award. Yours was the first positive response that we received from a large number of proposals we sent out. A lot had happened, very quickly, since then.

  • We built 2/3 of the shelves for our library, plus the tables and chairs for the students, and the library monitor’s desk.
  • We repaired and installed 4 computers that were donated by ForChildren, Inc.
  • Several teachers got together and painted a world map project on the wall.
  • And last, but not least, we have been working hard to catalog the generous donations of books we received from many people and organizations, including you.

"Actually, you donated money, as you know. The committee felt that your money was best spent purchasing books that were unlikely to be donated. We purchased a lot of local literature, poetry, and history books. We also bought some textbooks in philosophy, and sociology, and grammar books for French and English. All of which were snatched up by the teachers, almost before we had a chance to catalog them.

"The big opening day took place on the first anniversary of the school. The minister of education was there to cut the ribbon and toast us. I’m afraid you’ll have to wait till I come home to see other pictures. Advantx film can’t be developed here.

"I’m proud to say this library is used, in fact, packed with students everyday. They are reading more, studying, even doing research right here in the school. It really is a great thing to see. So thank you again for your amazing gift. Keep up the excellent work, and I’ll probably meet you this Fall when I COS. "

Yours in Peace,
--Colleen P. Garrett, PCV Cape Verde, and the Sao Domingos Library Committee.

[Fall ‘02 Grant, reported in Pacific Waves Jan–Feb 2003]

Library Project
$444 for a library collection
Muang Loei, Thailand

"The money donated by the San Diego Peace Corps Volunteer Association, in the amount of $444, or 18, 650 Baht was used to help replace the book collection lost to a major flood in September 2002 at Si Boon Ruang Municipal School #2 in the capital city of Loei, in Loei Province, Thailand.

"The money provided much wanted and needed educational resources and opportunities for the approximately 450 students and 22 teachers at the school. At the same time, it also contributed to the realization of one of the goals of the Integrated Education and Community Outreach program of the Peace Corps of Thailand, that of development of school libraries in Thailand.

"We were [had been] unable to purchase encyclopedias, atlas books and maps, children’s storybooks, Thai history and culture books, health books, science books and resources for the library. After collecting funds from other community sources and sources abroad, my co-worker from the Education Office, 2 librarian teachers, and I made the journey to Khon Kaen, which has a much better supplied bookstore (due to the presence of the major university there). It was amazing to see the teachers so excited to be able to have this opportunity to share and supply the students and their co-teachers with books again, updated and new!

"At this time, the books have been delivered to the school, catalogued and are in use! The librarian at Si Boom Ruang School is currently trying to get some funding from the Municipal office for more bookshelves and other library “hardware.” The Municipal office did contribute 10,000 Baht worth of books to each of the three Municipal schools here.

Unfortunately, the Municipal office, as is also the case in the USA, doesn’t consider educational funding to be a top priority. I will continue to work at this development project by creating an English language “learning center” for the teachers and students to use. We are also now planning to have a training meeting in library use and organization for the students, hopefully to be done by the end of this school term.

Many, many thanks have been given to me on your behalf. Enclosed are some photographs [see next issue] and a thank-you card from some fourth-grade students here in Muang Loei.

Please contact me if you require any further information and accept my thanks at allowing this to happen!"

Most sincerely,
--Shellie Norris, PCV Thailand, and Mr. Akkaradej Dokmai, Education Supervisor
[Spring ‘03 Grant, reported last issue, Pacific Waves, July–Aug 2003]


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"The hottest places in hellare reserved for those wo, in times of great moral crisis, maintain their neutrality." --Dante

Another Mother for Peace is Back!

How many of us, who can remember the ‘60s, remember the childlike poster in bright yellow from Another Mother for Peace that dared to say, “War is not healthy for children and other living things?”

Someone had asked me about it. I had had a copy of it for years but couldn’t find it. Curious, I did a google search for “Another Mother” and what-do-you-know? Another Mother... is back!

The group is still around or rather, re-commissioned as it were, and online. It is nice to know that with war becoming more and more “in vogue” to solve disputes between countries, a group was speaking out against it—and one kind of close to my heart, well, nostalgic anyway.

They are selling items with their logo (right). AND they suggest we do our peace homework.

What is Peace Homework?
Another Mother for Peace believes that it is our patriotic duty to speak out against war. Our precious democracy allows us as citizens to voice our opinions and to influence the debate in Washington. Peace Homework is how we make our voices heard.

  • Sign up for the Another Mother for Peace email list
  • Tell a friend about Another Mother for Peace
  • We depend on your support of AMP through the purchase of Peace Materials.
  • Work for your peace candidate: distribute literature, get out the vote, baby-sit for parents who need to get to the polls, etc.
  • Wear your AMP “War is not healthy...” medallion. Don’t have one? New ones are available now!
  • Take stock in your stock. Divest yourself from companies that are part of the military industrial complex. Support Socially Responsible Investing.
  • Remember—NO WAR TOYS, EVER!

So...,check it out. Another Mother for Peace is a non-profit, non-partisan association ....http://www.anothermother.org
--Submitted by Don Beck, Bolivia 1967–69

 

Committee for a Museum
of the Peace Corps Experience

The committee has been formed based in Oregon where the Museum of Peace Corps Experience has been established, founded in the ideal of “bringing it all back home.” Here is an excerpt from a letter intended to reach as many RPCVs as possible:

“While the Peace Corps is very successful at fulfilling most of Kennedy’s vision, the third goal of the mission—the promotion of a better understanding of other peoples by Americans—continues to lag behind.

“We need your help to realize the full potential of the Peace Corps Mission. As a Retuned Peace Corps Volunteer (RPCV), you have the background to help us create the Museum of the Peace Corps Experience.

“As the Peace Corps enters its fifth decade, there is a wealth of stories that should be shared with a wider audience.  This proposed permanent museum will:

  • Bring many unknown or misunderstood cultures home to Americans, and especially the children
  • Provide permanent and rotating exhibitions featuring and interpreting the art and artifacts that reflect the lifestyles of various countries around the world
  • Mount traveling exhibits, working with returned volunteer groups to bring Peace Corps stories into many communities around the country
  • Serve as a repository for the memories and memorabilia of Returned Peace Corp Volunteers

“...Planning for the new museum is under way. The Organizing Committee has already developed and opened two exhibits featuring the traditional folk arts of other cultures. Please see our website http://www.peacecorpsmuseum.org for further information.”

The full letter is on the SDPCA website: http://sdpca.org/articles/MuseumPCExp.html

More about how to help them along is listed there as well.
—Submitted by Don Beck, Bolivia (67–69)

 

Peace Gallery:
Help The Peace Gallery
Grow!

The Peace Gallery grew out of a desire to provide positive coverage of our global community. Most often the only information we see and hear is centered around disease, disaster, and war. There is nothing about the world I saw during my Peace Corps service in Ghana—family, friendship, rich culture, and capable people. My Peace Corps experience was not unique.

This Peace Gallery presents images from around the world as seen through the cameras of Peace Corps volunteers. Although the images show the amazing diversity on our planet, they also show how similar we are to each other. In looking through the gallery, marvel at the differences, but also see the similarities. After spending two years in the Peace Corps, one realizes it is how close we all are that is truly amazing.

Interested in helping build The Peace Gallery?  The Gallery needs photos from returned and currently serving Peace Corps Volunteers.  To be included, send two to five photos to The Peace Gallery. Images from any year or country are welcome. Images from countries you visited during your service are also welcome. We can scan photographs, slides, and negatives.

Please read our instructions for mailing photographs!
Some things to note:

  • Two to five images per person for a range of dates and areas. 
  • Your images will be returned within three weeks of receipt
  • Your images will be credited to you (unless you wish not to)
  • To post your images we need a signed short legal statement.
  • You will be asked to write a brief description for each image included in the Gallery.
  • Images in The Peace Gallery will be available to educators and students for non-commercial use.
  • We may not be able to use some or all of your photos. This is rare!

For more information, contact Wayne Breslyn at wbreslyn@peacegallery.org

-- Wayne Breslyn, Ghana, 1992-94
[Excerpted online from Gallery homepage: http://www.peacegallery.org ]


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Recruitment Corner

Greetings Everyone!

Everyone had such a great time at the Salvadoran restaurant. Our future volunteers had a blast talking to all of you RPCVS. Thanks! Hope you’re off to a snappy Fall. We have a very active season planned for September and October. Here’s what’s on tap for getting folks interested in our great organization:

  • SDSU Career Services Drop-in Office Hours
    Mondays and Thursdays—2 pm–4 pm
    Informational Meetings
  • SDSU (Third Thurs of Every Month)
    September 18th and October 16th
    SDSU Career Services, 4 pm–5 pm
  • Downtown SD—San Diego Downtown Library
    (Always Fourth Tues of Every Month)
    September 23rd and October 28th
    Downtown Library, 7 pm–8:15 pm
    820 E St., San Diego, CA 92101
  • North County—Oceanside Public Library
    October 23rd
    Pendleton Room, 6 pm–7:30 pm
    330 North Coast Highway, Oceanside, CA 92054

If you are interested in talking about your experience to the story-eager public at one of the events above, please let me know. Also, there are some career fairs that I would love to have help manning the table during the day. They typically include lunch, parking, and good company [me :-)]

And most importantly, there will be a part-time job opening for the UCSD Peace Corps Rep. It will consist of 15–20 hours per week, if you’re interested, please send your contact information (whether or not you’re a UCSD student) an e-resume, and your country & years of service to Kris Kohler, peacecorps@ucsd.edu

"Live as if you were to die tomorrow,
learn as if you were to live forever." --Gandhi

Vaya Con Paz,
--David Fogelson, El Salvador Agroforesty (1998–2000)
Peace Corps Los Angeles--San Diego Regional Recruiter
619-594-2188


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Welcome to New Members

We of SDPCA extend a warm welcome to our newest members. We’ve seen some of you at our events already and we want all of you to get involved in our activities. Let us hear from you!! You can reach us by the contact information listed in Contact SDPCA. Old members, use this section as your SDPCA Membership Directory update.
New members are listed by name, country and years of service, area of residence.

  • Doria Garms, Fairfax, VA
  • Amy Reck, Romania (2001–2003), New Kensington, PA
  • Stephanie Scarritt, Bangladesh (2001–2003), San Diego, CA


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Newsletter Credits

Pacific Waves is published six times a year by the San Diego Peace Corps Association which is fully responsible for its content. Except for copyrighted material, articles may be reprinted without permission with credit to the SDPCA.

Contributions are encouraged: e-mailed text file on disk- Mac preferred, or typed copy.

Please send to Editor, SDPCA, P.O. Box 26565, San Diego, CA 92196 or e-mail: newseditor@sdpca.org

Editor
Cindy Ballard [interim]

Layout / Production
Don Beck, Jeff Cleveland

Contributors this issue are:

Shellie Norris, Colleen Garrett, Ted Finkel, David Fogelson, Barbara Casillas, Marjory Clyne, John Coyne, Jonathon Richter, Frank Yates, Rudy Sovinee, Don Beck

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