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Peace Corps and Retirement

Retirement and Good Living

Like many of the boomer generation, I had thought about joining Peace Corps after graduating from college in 1972 but opted to get married and have a family instead.

I also worked in my career as a Public Health Nutritionist until 2009. When my husband died suddenly in 2007 I had to ask myself what would I do to jump-start my life again.

revisited my old goal of working in developing countries and looked for an organization as the vehicle to send me. It was disappointing that many would not send older Americans. It was a friend who informed me that her friend entered the Peace Corps at age 50 and loved it. I visited their website and started an application, knowing that I qualified for full retirement benefits from my job in 2009. Africa was my first choice but when the invitation came for service in Zambia it described very primitive living conditions and I was afraid that I wasn’t up to it physically. My daughter wrote of her admiration for what I was embarking upon. It was her belief in me that gave me the confidence to accept the appointment.

 As it turned out I brought great skills in living a healthy lifestyle which made me very well suited to village life. Cooking nutritious meals from local foods, getting adequate sleep enabled me to stay well throughout my years in service. All my job skills were a real asset to the village and to Peace Corps. They gave me the confidence that I had something to contribute toward development and health promotion.

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