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Peace Corps Partners with Population Services International

Organizations Expand Collaboration for
Greater Health Impact in Five African Countries


WASHINGTON D.C., December 17, 2010Peace Corps and Population Services International (PSI) this week announced a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to expand health opportunities in six pilot countries in Africa where both organizations have long-standing programs. Efforts are already under way in Benin, Kenya, Madagascar, Malawi, and Mozambique.

Our work with PSI will expand health programs in five key African countries and give Peace Corps volunteers more tools in the fight against HIV and other global health challenges, said Peace Corps Director Aaron S. Williams (returned Peace Corps volunteer/Dominican Republic 1967-1970). This partnership with PSI will increase the capacity of our organizations to work shoulder-to-shoulder with African communities on accessible health solutions.

The MOU was developed based on existing successful collaboration. In Benin, PSI has worked with Peace Corps volunteers since 2003, through funding from the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), to promote positive health messages through a group of trained peer educators. Since 2003, Peace Corps volunteers have helped PSI/Benin reach more than 100,000 youths in 105 communities via their Amour et Vie program.

PSI has always considered the Peace Corps a close partner, and we are thrilled to expand our relationship with this Memorandum of Understanding, says PSI President and CEO Karl Hofmann. This partnership truly leverages each organizations strengths to create sustainable health impact and improve the well-being of countless communities.

PSI works in more than 65 developing countries around the world to overcome some of the most pressing public health issues, including malaria, child survival, HIV prevention, maternal mortality, and access to reproductive health services. This partnership creates a system through which Peace Corps posts and local PSI offices can establish a working relationship designed to increase the capacity of both efforts at a grassroots level. Peace Corps volunteers live and work with the communities they serve. The volunteers associated with this collaboration will be able to share resources and techniques and the agencies will supplement each others work.

About PSI: PSI is a leading global health organization with programs targeting malaria, child survival, HIV, and reproductive health. Working in partnership within public and private sectors, and harnessing the power of markets, PSI provides life-saving products, clinical services, and behavior change communications that empower the world's most vulnerable populations to lead healthier lives. www.psi.org; Twitter: www.twitter.com/PSIHealthyLives; Blog: www.psi.org/HealthyLives

About the Peace Corps: President John F. Kennedy established the Peace Corps on March 1, 1961, by executive order. Peace Corps will commemorate 50 years of promoting peace and friendship around the world through 2011. Historically, more than 200,000 Americans have served with the Peace Corps to promote a better understanding between Americans and the people of 139 host countries. Today, 8,655 volunteers are working with local communities in 77 host countries. Peace Corps volunteers must be U.S. citizens and at least 18 years of age. Peace Corps service is a 27-month commitment.

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