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San Diego Peace Corps Association Newsletter

March – April 2005 -- Volume 18, Number 2


Index: click on your choice:..... ....... ..A Great Peace Corps Week 2005!

PEACEful Greetings!
[Notes from a new "R"PCV]

SDPCA Monies
Pie Charts

Grant Proposals
6 Projects Funded

Global Awareness Award
Peace Resource Center Honored

from the Pres. Good Stuff's Happening

Board Minutes-Jan & Feb '05

Community Action Events

Potpourri



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Tsunami Relief

Here is a good source listing groups and organizations currently working in relief efforts. The pages on Google and CNN 40+ urls for relevant websites : http://www.google.com/tsunami_relief.html

Some sites listed:

Information Websites:
• Google News coverage
• ReliefWeb
• Aid groups (via CNN)
• Relief organizations (via USAID)
• Tsunami help blog
• Wikipedia
 
Donation Websites on Google:
• Action Against Hunger
• American Red Cross (via Amazon)
• American Jewish World Service
• AmeriCares
• Asia Foundation
• BAPS Care International
• CARE
• Direct Relief International
• GOAL
• Habitat for Humanity
• International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent
• Islamic Relief Worldwide
• Karuna Trust
• Network for Good
• Oxfam International (US page)
• Quarters From Kids: Tsunami Relief and Rebuilding
• Sarvodaya
• Save the Children
• UNICEF (US page) (via Paypal)
• World Food Programme (UN)
• World Vision

On CNN but NOT on Google:
• ADRA International
• American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee, Inc.
• Association for India’s Dev.
• Catholic Relief Services
• Christian Children’s Fund
• Church World Service
• Doctors Without Borders
• Food for the Hungry, Inc.
• International Aid
• International Medical Corps
• International Rescue Committee
• Lutheran World Relief
• MAP International
• Mercy Corps
• Operation Blessing International
• Operation USA
• Plan USA
• Project Concern International
• World Concern

Send names of other groups working with Tsunami relief to newseditor@sdpca.org. We are building a list so that all can share. Thanks!
–Don Beck, Bolivia (1967-69)


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Photo from Sonia Bouchard

PEACEful Greetings!

This is Sonia M. Bouchard now writing to you as a RETURNED Peace Corps Volunteer. I am back in San Diego and I want to touch bases with you and the SDPCA specifically regarding the fruit dehydration project with the Anse de Mai Pre-school in Dominica. [Tonner ISF Award of $650, Spring 2004, see Pacific Waves vol.17-n.1, May-June 04-ed.]

Once again, I want to extend my deepest thanks for the opportunity to help make this project come to life, although it isn’t totally complete, it is breathing. There have been some complications that are slowly getting worked out.

I left Dominica in October, rather suddenly. I had applied and been approved for a three month extension particularly to continue work on the project. For personal reasons I returned to the U.S. I apologize that I have not contacted you earlier, but I have been busy and also just getting back into the life of the U.S. It has been both at times shocking and comforting.

Project Update
When I left, we had finally just received the equipment from Excalibur Dehydrator. When I say “just” I mean JUST! I spent the Wednesday at the Ministry and Customs fighting for duty-free, which I finally got, and I left the following Friday. If you recall, we were having problems with shipping. The original cost estimate was done with FedEx and when it was time for actual shipping the manufacturer was told due to recent regulation changes, FedEx no longer made shipments of that weight to Dominica. We had to investigate other shippers who proved to be substantially more expensive. We needed to seek additional funds.

Thankfully, Ms. Stephanie Raya of Excalibur was sympathetic to our project and sought the additional funds needed from her company. Although, it was quite a timely process we were indeed eventually granted the additional support. The Dehydrator was finally shipped via DHL.

Since my time had expired and the project was yet to be completed, I made some arrangements to help continue the implementation of the project.

  1. My community partner and I, Mrs. Carol Charles-White, principal of the pre-school, met to further discuss the project. We identified key individuals, mostly parents and friends of the pre-school, who could serve on a committee to manage the beginning of production. They were contacted and most agreed to be involved. We also put together an implementation plan outline to help guide the committee.
  2. I asked another volunteer with remaining time to help monitor the project and offer assistance when she could. She is placed in close proximity to Anse de Mai. Her name is Valerie McCoy.
  3. My APCD is aware of the project status and has offered his support as a resource/ adviser. As Dominica is a small island-nation, our APCD is able to involve himself with several volunteer projects.
  4. I continue to be in contact with all three parties now involved, Mrs. White, my APCD, Patrick Henderson and PCV Valerie. And I am exploring what other resource assistance, in the form of recipes and materials, I may offer now being Stateside.


Photo from Sonia Bouchard

Some additional exciting developments have occurred for the Pre-school, which are also having a delaying effect on the project but will eventually support its success. The government has agreed to allocate land to the school on which to build. The school is currently housed in the Catholic Church Hall. A grant has been awarded to fund the construction of the school. Construction began in December 2004.

The principal and PTA are very excited about the new school. It is to be located in very near proximity to the grammar school, the Community Resource Centre, which houses a computer lab, and to everyone’s relief, off the main highway where it had been previously located. It is also a space reserved solely for the Pre-school, unlike before when the Hall was used by many groups for many occasions.

Having their own space will insure security for the expensive equipment. And since Mrs. White is involved in the design of the new school we have discussed special provisions to customize a work station in support of the dehydration project.

I cannot provide you with a projected date of completion. I am sure you understand the nature of time as well as bureaucracy that operates in developing countries, some slower than others, and there always seems to be some unforeseen factor that surfaces suddenly. I am more than hopeful, though, that this project will eventually get on its feet.


Photo from Sonia Bouchard

And I am committed to doing what I can in support of it. I have every confidence in my community partner, Mrs. White who is a dynamic and motivated key contributor to her community. I will continue to send periodic updates including pictures when available, though the village photographer, me, has returned home.

I have included some photos I have from my archives of the students and of their graduation last June.

Thank You,
–Sonia M. Bouchard, RPCV, Dominica 2002-2004


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SDPCA Monies 2003-04

Figures from our CFO give a simplified visual presentation of where SDPCA monies come from and where they go.

  • Dues covered 98% of Newsletter costs
  • Monies collected for/from social events covered about 80% of the costs.
  • Grant awards must be sent by international bank transfer to expedite and account for proper receipt of funds. This process has evolved from experience. This came to about 4% of the monies awarded.


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Mark J. Tonner International Support Fund
Grant Proposals

Last November’s cycle of grant proposals produced far more requests than we could support with the $1,500 budgeted. Six were funded in whole or in part for an expanded budget of $2,200. As sought, each had strong ties to San Diego, wrote compelling proposals, with community involvement, and the country director wrote an authorization letter of support. Here is a summary of the projects funded.

We look forward to hearing from the recipients as they work and complete their projects.

Operation Clean High School Health & Marine Area
Preservation

Aimee Sanders—Mayumba, Gabon, $486

Partial funding to construct latrines to protect health & seepage into marine waters. The beaches are nesting areas to leatherback turtles, and the waters are important to humpback whales. The high school has 547 students, 16 teachers, and no bathrooms. Local merchants and organizations have donated materials and labor. They needed additional funding in order to pay for the remaining materials and labor.

• Community Health Project
Silvie Georgens—Corquin, Honduras, $498

In a similar project, the people of Corquin are each contributing money, and/or material and labor to help construct 20 latrines. The regional health center is helping through workshops in construction, use and maintenance.

• Treadle Water Pump for Irrigating Orphans' Garden
Georgann Gall—Lesotho, $350

The title says it all, the project will provide, purchase and ship a foot-pump and pipe to irrigate a 1,480 sq. meter garden, located uphill from the source. The land, seeds and fertilizer have each been donated by townspeople. This helps assure the productivity and saves manually hauling the water.

Mossi School Garden
Jamie McDonald—Zouma, Burkina Faso, $320
The garden project will not only benefit the students and their family’s nutrition but it will also provide a real life educational experience in different farming techniques, and in the importance of the environment. Jamie believes this project will also help mobilize community support for the school and could potentially lead to higher enrollment in future years.

Community Center
Monique Drew—El Matal, Ecuador, $420
The full request included surfacing of a playground expansion, but we were able to fund 40 chairs–allowing the area to be used for community meetings, plus posts for a children’s soccer field, a see-saw, and an additional playhouse with a bridge connection to the original playhouse.

• La Escuela San Antonio Renovation Project
Rowena Castillo—Caraguay, Paraguay, $284
This community sought help in re-cementing and repainting the exterior of a school, and the interior of 2 classrooms. The community raised over 30%, and we agreed to participate.


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Global Awareness Award

Recipient Selected

The second annual Global Awareness Award will be presented at our May general meeting. The recipient is the Peace Resource Center (PRC).

The PRC is a community clearinghouse of information on peace and social justice issues and activities. By promoting networking among peace-related organizations, offering nonviolent alternatives to conflict resolution and carrying on a program of peace education, the PRC provides an ongoing presence throughout San Diego County.

The PRC is guided by the principles of nonviolence, tolerance, compassion and respect for diversity. Membership is open to all individuals and organizations concerned about peace with justice and the need to live by these principles.

Learn more at http://prcsandiego.home.igc.org/

Be at our annual meeting for the presentation of this second annual Global Awareness Award. Contact Rudy Sovinee at globalawards@sdpca.org to be on the committee to help select next year’s winner.

 

The Peace Resource Center
3850 Westgate Place,
San Diego, California 92105
Phone: (619) 263-9301
Email: prcsandiego@igc.org

Founded in 1980 by six local organizations committed to peace, the Peace Resource Center (PRC) now has over 40 member organizations and hundreds of individual and family members [including SDPCA].

The Peace Resource Center works for peace by:

  • Educating the public on peace and social justice issues.
  • Facilitating communication and networking ...
  • Functioning as a central clearinghouse for information...
  • Consulting on peace education, program..., conflict resolution.
  • Publishing a bi-monthly Peace Calendar and Newsletter.
  • Providing speakers, trainers and workshops...
  • Promoting dialogue and understanding...
  • Presenting programs on a variety of peace & social justice issues.
    –From The Visitor, Winter 2004/2005


–Rudy Sovinee, Chair-Global Awards, Ghana (1970-73)


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Membership Committee News

By popular request, here are brief introductions to our current Membership Coordinators. Each of our wonderful Coordinators is a multi-talented, multi-TASKING individual in his/her own right and very interesting and informative!

Give them a call or an email to say hello, to check on any local events (upcoming, or ones you’d like!) or other SDPCA questions you might have. Be aware that each has a very active career and may be out of town briefly when you call.

Area Coordinators

North County Coast Satellite Coordinator
nccmemsat@sdpca.org,

ANNIE AGUILAR, Honduras (1995-97).
Annie, a civil engineer, married her during-Honduran-service sweetheart, and she and Juan Carlos now have two darling, active daughters as well as full time careers. They travel back “home” to Honduras each year.

North County Inland Satellite Coordinator
ncimemsat@sdpca.org

CINDY BALLARD, Botswana (1993-95)
Cindy, our former outstanding newsletter editor, is currently trying to maintain sanity in the middle of a huge house remodeling project as well as full time work with a technology company. When she wants to escape insanity, she hits the beach running.

Central SD North (of I-8 exc. PB) Satellite Coordinator

VACANT. Can you help? Contact Brenda Terry-Hahn.

Central SD South (of I-8 incl. PB) Satellite Coordinator
csdsmemsat@sdpca.org

LINDA BROWER, VISTA, Appalachia (1974-1974)
Linda, our newest Coordinator, is a bona fide San Diego native, recently returned from a long stint in Oregon, to a VERY romantic reunion and marriage with a high school sweetheart. She currently maintains a part-time real estate career in Oregon and is there one week out of each five


East County Satellite Coordinator

ecmemsat@sdpca.org

DAN TAYLOR, Belize (1986-88)
Dan is our bat naturalist/biologist who shares his considerable friendly talents on annual SDPCA camping trips and outings. He and his handsome son Tyler share their recently purchased Craftsman bungalow remodeling project to any and all comers, especially those with strong biceps and fixing-up talents!

South Bay Satellite Coordinator

VACANT. Can you help? Contact Brenda Terry-Hahn.

Other Membership Leaders

Membership, Database Records
communications@sdpca.org

LYNN JARRETT, Ukraine (2001-2003)
Lynn has recently retired from the San Diego Union Tribune as a Technology Manager and is struggling to make a friendly acquaintance of our very complex membership database software. She is also on call by the PC and State Department for her expertise in Eastern European country issues and travels there frequently.

Membership, Financial Records
cfo@sdpca

FRANK YATES, Ghana (1973-76)
Frank, a civil engineer with a long career in traffic engineering with San Diego County (formerly) and City (currently), established our membership database and financial records back before television and has shouldered these jobs for many years. He is, I hear, only TOO happy to have someone else take over the non-financial part of the job. Frank, with Brenda (below), is one of the original founders of SDPCA and is also very active in other community leadership roles.

Membership Coordinator
membership@sdpca.org

BRENDA TERRY-HAHN, Nepal (1964-66)
I, your fearless where-angels-fear-to-tread Coordinator, elected to leave editing the SDPCA newsletter to establish our first-ever membership outreach/support system. A “born and bred” Texan, I’ve been in California as a teacher or social worker since 1966 but you may hear a southern accent when I’ve had a glass of wine. I am a passionate gardener and plant sharer, a reader, vinologist, a pine needle basket maker, and a curry cook, among many other things. (Some people say, “so many women/men, so little time;” I think “so many delicious projects, so little time.”)

We Membership folk are now in the process of tightening up our initial goal of supporting newly returned RPCV members and are moving into ongoing membership support projects. Your comments, requests and suggestions are welcome!
–Brenda Terry-Hahn, Membership Coordinator, Nepal (1964-66)


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Peace Match: Speak Your PEACE

Peace Match is a service of the NPCA to connect RPCVs to places wishing to hear about Peace Corps Serivce. How to sign up is at the end of the article. Ed.–Word is, this is such a good idea, the Peace Corps itself may takeover hosting Peace Match. Way to go NPCA!

If you are a classroom teacher looking for first-hand information on the culture and way of life of the people in the countries served by the Peace Corps, register as a Host on their Web site and search for Speakers to fit your criteria.

If you are an RPCV, register as a Speaker on the Web site to become a speaker for a classroom. (You will not be able to search for Hosts until your data has been confirmed and you have been notified by e-mail.)

If you are looking for someone to make a Peace Corps presentation to a community organization or you are a college faculty member or administrator looking for a recruiter to talk to your students about opportunities to serve in the Peace Corps, please contact your nearest PC Recruiting office.

Here is how you can do all this.

Go online to Peace Match: http://www.PeaceMatch.org

Then....

For San Diego, our local “recruiting office representative” is
SDPCA’s own Rudy Sovinee. He can be reached as follows:

Rudy Sovinee, SD Regional Recruiter
(voice mail) 619-594-2188,
(cell) 310-356-1114, or

(email) RSovinee@peacecorps.gov


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Cultural Event—SuperBowl XXXIX

Byline, San Diego:
It definitely was “super”. Super sized TV-I’ve never seen one that big, super amount of good munchies and drinks. Lots of good people to laugh with. My thanks to Tony and Karen Sparks for opening their home again this year for the party.

Can’t remember who won--the Patriots?—but those commercials were fun to watch.
–Marjory Clyne reporting


Photo by Rudy Sovinee

Byline, Escondido:
About 30 nominees, RPCVs, family and friends attended the North County social, but the largest contingent by far were the nominees. It was the biggest, best party of the six Rudy has hosted so far.

We had tables filled with wonderfully delicious food, a projection screen show, and lots of conversation about the intricacies of getting into the Peace Corps. The fact that the game was close, but slow moving was perfect for the side conversations, and this year the number rooting for each team was about even. Fans were quite good natured on both sides.

With Rudy as the recruiter, plan on another nominee filled event next year, so RPCVs will again be needed.
–Rudy Sovinee reporting


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Tijuana Day Trip, 1/29

The skies cleared and a fearless group of Returned Peace Corps Volunteers, family and friends all met Gerry Sodomka at the San Ysidro Trolley Station for an adventure south of the border. Gerry Sodomka, Nigeria (1966-68), our resident Tijuana expert, led a group across the border and into Tijuana. We were given a “five minute” Spanish lesson for those “gringos” in need. Gerry also gave us some background history on Tijuana, Mexico and his connection to Mexico. The group began to mix and mingle and meet one another. Once again, we had an amazing cross section of Returned Peace Corps Volunteers and began sharing stories of past.


Photo by Liz Brown

As the group headed towards Mariscos Don Pepe Restaurant we took in the sights and sounds of the border town. Our group haggled, checked prices of various items in each and every store, and got acquainted with one another. After a forty-five minute walk through Tijuana we climbed up Boulevard Fundadores to Don Pepe Restaurant. Having just passed the Tijuana Brewery everyone was thirsty and hungry.

The restaurant was wonderful! Gerry and a few others fluent in Spanish helped those of us more linguistically challenged place our orders (and read menus). The tastes were amazing and the ambiance was friendly.


Photo by Liz Brown

We were well taken care of enjoying ceviche, soup, fresh fish (and other tasty treats). You could make your dish hot or mild. Desert was enjoyed by some and the finale, a Kahlua drink with cinnamon – delicious! Most of us were filled to the top and caught cabs back to the border to return stateside. However, others meandered back through town, taking in more of the people and sights. And of course, making any much needed purchases south of the border.

A special thanks to Gerry. SDPCA has been enjoying Gerry’s trips to Tijuana for many, many years. We thank him once again and look forward to next year’s trip.

For those more adventurous and interested in checking out Don Pepe’s Restaurant, the restaurant is located at Blvd. Dundadores 688, Tijana, B.C., Tels:684-9086, 684-8866. Average cost for one $20-25 USD. Enjoy!
–Elizabeth Brown, RPCV Tonga (2001-2003)


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Activism pays the rent on being alive and being here on the planet. —Alice Walker

From the President...

Good Stuff Is Happening!

All goes well with the SDPCA. Any ideas related to community action efforts are especially welcome these days as we try to understand better what the membership would find interesting and fruitful. Social has been busy with the holiday gathering, the Super Bowl parties, ethnic dinners, including an excursion into Tijuana, and the up-coming Earth Day event and camping weekend in April. Over and above these, there has been real synergy developing with the Peace Corps recruiting efforts, for example, the recent RPCV panel discussion about environmental sciences presentation at the Mission Valley Library

Good stuff is happening! There is a great energy for all we do together, but we can always use more help—as this is a volunteer-driven organization.

We’ll need your energy and participation at our annual meeting in May as we elect a new Board of Directors. Check online to find a board position right for you and please join in.

Our long-term Treasurer, Frank Yates, will be resigning from that position in May so we are looking for someone to take it on; it includes oversight of funds, bookkeeping and preparation of financial reports. If you would like more information, contact any Board member but you’ll have to speak with Frank at some point to get the complete picture.
–Gregg Pancoast, Costa Rica (1985-86)


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Board Meetings 1/12 & 2/9/05

Minutes

Attendance: Marjory Clyne, Lynn Jarrett, Frank Yates, Gregg Pancoast, Nikol Shaw, Kristen Slanina attended both meetings. Ted Finkel attended in January and Liz Brown attended in February.

Minutes were approved as amended.

President’s Report: See committee reports.

Financial Report: Frank reported balances and provided a detailed statement of income and expenses. Frank, Gregg, and Ted Finkel are coordinating an independent review of the finances, to occur in February.

Membership: Lynn reported that the SDPCA membership is at 142 current, 40 past due, totaling 182. NPCA membership is at 95 current, 22 past due, totaling 117. The number of free members shall be reported at the March meeting. Lynn, Marjory, and Brenda will meet to discuss membership communication issues.

Fundraising: Entertainment Book and calendar sales have ended after a successful fundraising effort.

Global Awards: Projects totaling $2,200 were approved for the December 2004 round of ISF Grants. Six projects were funded (see page ). The deadline for the next round of ISF selections is 3/15. Review will be done via email. The Board has made a selection for the local Global Awareness Award (see page ); the honor will be presented at the Annual Meeting in May.

Communications: Our next newsletter deadline is 02/10/04. SDPCA will not be pursuing a listserv; the list serve is too complicated for the group’s needs. The Board agreed that newsletters should be sent to those RPCV groups who send newsletters to SDPCA, as has been done in the past.

Social: Past and present activities are covered in newsletter stories.
Speaker’s Bureau: The 1st Panel Discussion was interesting and well attended. Encore panels will be held on 2/15 at USD, 2/21 at SDSU, and 2/23 and UCSD.

The Peace Corps Week event will be 3/6 from 1pm-5pm at UCSD’s International Great House. More information will follow via email and post. Rudy suggests the Board promote Peace Match for RPCV speaking engagements and that in turn, the SDPCA Speaker’s Bureau should focus on helping those participating in Peace Match to become better speakers.

New Business: Marjory also has information about a film about Ugandan children; Kristen will pursue as a possible social event.A motion was made to obtain a second mailbox key; the motion carried. The key will reside with Marjory and will be used only for back-up or emergency purposes.Nikol will forward a copy of the SDPCA 2002-2005 Strategic Plan to the Board and Committee Chairs for review and comment. Discussion will be at the March meeting.

Next Meetings: The March meeting will be 6:30 PM, 3/2/05, at the home of Lynn Jarrett. All RPCVs are welcome to attend.
–Nikol Shaw, Secretary, Mauritania (1999-2001)


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Community Action Events

For community action any month, Peace Corps Week reminds us one excellent way of bringing it all home is to speak about our experiences with individuals or groups. Peace Match, through NPCA offers a good way to bring together speakers with those who want to hear from us. Rudy Sovinee, our local Speaker Chair has offered to help sharpern the speaking skills of those who might want some tips.

Check with Volunteer San Diego to see what events are happening, if you don’t hear from us. Let us know of any events you may want others to join you in.
–Jesse Santos, Papua New Guinea, 1998-’00, VP SDPCA,
Community Action Chair communityaction@sdpca.org


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Peace is not the absence of conflict but the presence of creative alternatives for responding to conflict -- alternatives to passive or aggressive responses, alternatives to violence. —Dorothy Thompson

Bulgarian RPCVs, PCVs and Staff Online
Take a look at yahoogroup to find present, past and future peace corps volunteers. Rich Collins currently is moderating a yahoo group for approximately 170 volunteers now serving in Bulgaria – the group includes prospective, former and current volunteers as well as Peace Corps staff. You can find it at PCBulgaria2-subscribe@yahoogroups.com

Peace Corps Budget for 2006
President Bush Announces 2006 Budget; Asks Congress for $345 M for Peace Corps
http://www.peacecorps.gov/index.cfm?shell=resources.media.press.view&news_id=1015

Thank You RPCVs and Postal Annex Stores
We had another successful fundraising year thanks to the sale of almost 300 beautiful 2005 International Calendars to our members and friends.

We are indebted to the wonderful support of 24 PostalAnnex stores for their willingness to sell the Entertainment Books on our behalf. We sold a total of 210 books. With these two efforts we raised $1700 and have awarded that amount AND MORE to some of our current San Diego volunteers.

Here are some of the very worthy projects we funded: In Ecuador and Gabon to build latrines; in Burkino Faso well installation and fencing for a Primary School garden; in Paraguay partial funding for renovation of the Primary School. I am proud of the great work they are doing and our ability to offer them financial support.

With much gratitude,
–Marjory Clyne, Fundraising Chair, Western Samoa (1972-74)


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Newsletter Credits

Pacific Waves is published six times a year by the San Diego PeaceCorps 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
Liz Brown

Layout / Production
Don Beck

Contributors this issue are:
Sonia Bouchard, Brenda Terry-Hahn, Rudy Sovinee, Nikol Shaw, Frank Yates, Marjory Clyne, Liz Brown, Jesse Santos, Dan Taylor, Cindy Ballard, Don Beck

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