FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
Monday, February 27, 2006
Peace Corps Celebrates 45 Years of Service
WASHINGTON, D.C., February 27, 2006 Honoring the first groups to begin service in Ghana and Tanganyika to the most recent group on its way to Uganda and everyone in between, the Peace Corps kicks off a 45th anniversary celebration on March 1 to celebrate the legacy of service at home and abroad.
"Forty-five years ago, President John F. Kennedy called on Americans to serve their country in the cause of peace by living and working in developing countries," said Peace Corps Director Gaddi H. Vasquez. "From the coast of Madagascar to the jungles of Costa Rica, Peace Corps volunteers have built real bridges of friendship in 138 countries over the decades through thousands of remarkable projects and legacies."
The 45th anniversary commemoration continues throughout the year with events all across the country and around the world, including one on Capitol Hill to honor those in public service and one in Boston to present the first ever Kennedy Service Awards. To learn what events are taking place in your region or to see more information on the 45th anniversary, please visit: www.peacecorps.gov/45
To accomplish the Peace Corps\' mission of promoting friendship and world peace, the number of volunteers in the field today is at a 30-year high with 7,810 volunteers serving overseas. Volunteers in 75 countries work in the areas of education, health, HIV/AIDS education and prevention, information technology, business development, the environment, and agriculture.
"Serving as public diplomats, volunteers continue to change the world helping to break down barriers while establishing sustainable development. As international partnership and commerce blur borders, merging economies and ideas, the role and reach of the Peace Corps have never been more critical," said Director Vasquez.
Highlights of the 45th anniversary celebration:
The Peace Corps is celebrating a 45-year legacy of service at home and abroad, and a 30-year high for volunteers in is celebrating a 45-year legacy of service at home and abroad, and a 30-year high for volunteers in the field. Since 1961, more than 182,000 volunteers have helped promote a better understanding between Americans and the people of the 138 countries where volunteers have served. 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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