Peace Corps Volunteers Lead Camp in Jordan to Help Young Men Plan for their Future
Washington, D.C., August 5, 2013 - Peace Corps volunteers Rob Delaney and Will Evans are working with their community to build the character of young men in Jordan and help them set goals for their future through a camp called Boys Respecting Others (BRO). The Camp is funded in part through the Peace Corps Partnership Program (PCPP), which helps support Peace Corps volunteer community projects worldwide.
“Fights among students are a common problem in the boys’ schools in Jordan, and there are not many outlets for after-school activities where students can discover new interests or apply what they’ve learned in the classroom,” said Delaney, of Franklin, Tenn. “We decided to design a camp where students would be challenged to work together on critical thinking tasks and encouraged to consider their career goals and how they want to achieve them.”
Delaney and Evans invited 30 students from across Jordan to attend Camp BRO, where 10 counselors with both English and Arabic language skills will lead activities. A growing education gap in Jordan has women graduating university at higher rates than men, yet women are underrepresented in the workforce.
“Our ideal role model for the students is a college-educated Jordanian who can speak confidently about his career goals and how he has pursued them, and offer insight into dealing with personal and professional challenges,” said Delaney, a graduate of Northwestern University who has been living and working in Jordan since 2011. “We want students to consider how social norms in Jordan may change in the coming years and try to define a positive role for themselves when confronting questions about gender.”
Both Delaney and Evans hope the camp will continue long after they leave Jordan, and they are working closely with fellow volunteers who are interested in organizing the camp next year.
To receive funding through the PCPP, a community must make a 25 percent contribution to the total project cost and outline success indicators for each individual project. This helps ensure community ownership and a greater chance of long-term sustainability. One hundred percent of each tax-deductible PCPP donation goes toward a development project.
About Peace Corps/Jordan: Nearly 540 Peace Corps volunteers have served in Jordan since the program was established in 1997. Currently, 59 volunteers serve in Jordan. Volunteers work in the areas of education and youth and community development. Volunteers are trained and work in colloquial Arabic.
About the Peace Corps: Since President John F. Kennedy established the Peace Corps by executive order on March 1, 1961, more than 210,000 Americans have served in 139 host countries. Today, 8,073 volunteers are working with local communities in 76 host countries in agriculture, community economic development, education, environment, health and youth in development. Peace Corps volunteers must be U.S. citizens and at least 18 years of age. Peace Corps service is a 27-month commitment and the agency’s mission is to promote world peace and friendship and a better understanding between Americans and people of other countries. Visit www.peacecorps.gov for more information.