Family and Friends
Someone you care about is considering or is embarking on their service journey, and as a family member or friend, your encouragement can make a world of difference. Learn more about the Peace Corps, what Volunteers do, and what you can expect when someone you love steps up to serve.
Benefits of Service - Support While They Serve
We take care of Volunteers’ travel to and from the United States to the host country at the start of and the completion of service.
We pay Volunteers a monthly stipend to cover expenses such as food, local travel, and incidentals. We also cover their housing costs.
Volunteers accrue two vacation days per month of service, along with their host country’s holidays.
Medical & Dental Care
The Peace Corps provides, or completely covers, the costs for all necessary medical and dental care during training, service, and vacation, including preventive care, required medications, emergency care, and care relating to pre-existing conditions.
Student Loan Assistance
Volunteers qualify for the Department of Education Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program. Several federal programs and private loans may also qualify for further deferment or forgiveness. Ask your lender or click here.
Benefits of Service - Success After They Serve
Upon completing service, Peace Corps Volunteers will receive up to $10,000 (pre-tax) to help them resettle and prepare for life after Peace Corps service. Peace Corps Response Volunteers will receive at least $400 (pre-tax) for every month served.
Graduate School Benefits
Returned Volunteers qualify for reduced or even free tuition, assistantships, and stipends at 120+ campuses through the Paul D. Coverdell Fellows program.
Peace Corps Volunteers demonstrate to employers and admissions offices international experience, intercultural competence, extreme adaptability, and other transferable skills. We routinely hear from employers who intentionally seek out returned Peace Corps Volunteers.
Fuel for the Job Search
Returned Volunteers enjoy exclusive access to career fairs and to a large peer network. Learn more at peacecorps.gov/careers.
Extra Edge for Federal Jobs
After completing two years of service, Volunteers benefit from a year of non-competitive eligibility (NCE) for federal jobs, which offers a faster application process and enhanced desirability.
Health and Safety Are Top Priority
You care about your loved one’s well-being. We do too. That’s why Volunteers’ safety is a major priority.
Every country where the Peace Corps serves has medical and safety and security staff to provide health and safety services. They get support from the Peace Corps Offices of Safety and Security, and Health Services in Washington, D.C.
Though there are inherent risks to living and traveling in countries where the Peace Corps serves, we take these steps—and more—to protect our Volunteers.
Training for Safe and Productive Service
At the start of their service, Volunteers undergo thorough instruction in language, cross-cultural exchange, and health and safety. The training helps them build awareness of their new environment, increase their capacity to handle challenges, and understand how to adopt a safe and appropriate lifestyle.
Proactive Support for Volunteers’ Health
During the second stage of the application process, a Peace Corps Pre-Service Nurse will conduct a comprehensive medical evaluation to enable the Peace Corps to place Volunteers in countries with the resources to meet their health care needs. The evaluation is customized for each potential Volunteer and based on a careful review of their individual medical history. In situations that warrant a higher-level review, a physician or psychologist will also be involved.
At each country’s Post, Peace Corps staff includes at least two medical officers. All clinical staff are carefully evaluated, credentialed, and reviewed by the Office of Health Services’ Quality Improvement Unit at Peace Corps headquarters. Medical officers take part in continuing medical education in order to be up to date on current practices.
Medical staff provide basic medical supplies, train Volunteers on how to stay healthy, and deliver primary care as needed. If a health problem cannot be treated locally, the Peace Corps will pay for the Volunteer to travel and get treatment at a regional facility or in the United States.
Volunteers are also eligible for benefits under the Federal Employee Compensation Act for most injuries or illnesses that occur during Peace Corps service.
Emergencies at Home
The Peace Corps has mechanisms that operate 24/7 to notify a Volunteer of a family emergency at home.
If there’s a death in a Volunteer’s immediate family—a parent, spouse, sibling, child, or grandchild by blood, marriage, or adoption—the Peace Corps allows a two-week leave period and pays for the Volunteer’s round-trip travel home.
Each Peace Corps host country has a specific emergency action plan in case of natural disasters, civil unrest, and other events that may create safety risks.
The Peace Corps also has devoted in-country safety and security managers who are available 24/7 to offer Volunteers support in case of an emergency. During their training, Volunteers learn who they can contact, what to do, and where to go if they ever feel unsafe.
Learn more about safety and security at peacecorps.gov/safety.
Be sure to check out Peace Corps Family and Friends on Facebook to connect with other parents, friends, and family members of currently serving Volunteers.