Peace Corps celebrates 58 years during Peace Corps Week

February 25, 2019

WASHINGTON – Every year, Peace Corps Week memorializes President John F. Kennedy’s establishment of the Peace Corps on March 1, 1961, and celebrates the many ways the agency makes a positive impact in communities around the world. Throughout the week, the Peace Corps community will participate in events that celebrate and recognize its 58th birthday. This year, Peace Corps Week will run from Feb. 24 to March 2.

“Peace Corps Week is an opportunity to pause and reflect on the great work that volunteers, both currently serving and returned, do in their communities at home and abroad,” says Peace Corps Director Jody Olsen. “I would like to personally thank each and every member of the Peace Corps community for their dedication to service, their passion for peace, and their willingness to engage in cross-cultural exchange. Your work does not go unnoticed, and this week is to celebrate you.”

In the lead up to Peace Corps Week, the Peace Corps launched its annual video challenge that asks current and returned volunteers to submit films focused on a particular theme. The 2019 theme is "A day in the life" and aims to show what a day in the life of a volunteer, host family member, counterpart or community member looks like around the world. The video contest challenges volunteers and returned volunteers to support the Third Goal of Peace Corps, which is to promote a better understanding among Americans of foreign cultures and peoples.  

Over 20 Peace Corps Week events are taking place across the country from Feb. 24 to March 1. Activities include discussion panels with returned volunteers, structured diversity dialogs, recruitment events, stories from the field and film screenings. Returned volunteers participating in these events will share photos, music, culture and stories from their countries of service with those who are interested.

In addition to Peace Corps Week events, there are several activities returned volunteers can participate in to commemorate the establishment of Peace Corps, such as hosting festivals, speaking about their service at local schools or writing blog posts. For a full list of suggested activities, visit the Peace Corps Week page

About the Peace Corps: The Peace Corps sends Americans with a passion for service abroad on behalf of the United States to work with communities and create lasting change. Volunteers develop sustainable solutions to address challenges in education, health, community economic development, agriculture, environment and youth development. Through their Peace Corps experience, volunteers gain a unique cultural understanding and a life-long commitment to service that positions them to succeed in today's global economy. Since President John F. Kennedy established the Peace Corps in 1961, more than 235,000 Americans of all ages have served in 141 countries worldwide.

For more information, visit peacecorps.gov and follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

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