Peace Corps Submits FY 2010 Budget Request of $373.44 Million

An increase of $33.44 Million over FY 2009 appropriation of $340 Million

WASHINGTON, D.C., May 7, 2009 - President Barack Obama unveiled his fiscal year (FY) 2010 budget. The President has asked Congress to provide Peace Corps with a $373.44 million appropriation. If the $373.44 million request is approved by Congress, this will be the largest operating budget in Peace Corps\' history.

The proposed budget request reflects a plan for agency wide quality growth. This budget of $373.44 million will enable the Peace Corps to recruit, train, and support the thousands of Americans willing to devote two years of their lives to serve in a community abroad.

"President Obama is inspiring Americans to serve their country, and his administration is committed to providing as many opportunities as possible for Americans to serve as Peace Corps Volunteers," said acting Peace Corps Director Jody Olsen.

The proposed budget request of $373.44 million provides for a continued focus on Volunteer safety and security, as it remains the agency\'s number one priority. Additionally, this budget reflects the increased requests from our host countries for Volunteers to work in service projects related to agriculture, health, HIV/AIDS education and awareness, information technology, business development, the environment, education, and youth at risk.

Peace Corps costs every American roughly $1.23 a year, the average cost of a pint-sized bottle of water in the U.S. The Peace Corps\' budget request represents approximately one percent of one percent of the total federal budget.

Serving in the Peace Corps has become an increasingly competitive endeavor. In the last year, the Peace Corps has received over 13,000 applications, an increase of 16 percent from the previous year. There has also been an increase in the number of countries interested in hosting a Peace Corps program, and the agency is on track to handle even more applications in 2009.

As the Peace Corps approaches its 50th anniversary, the agency\'s service legacy continues to promote peace and friendship around the world. Historically, over 195,000 Volunteers have helped promote a better understanding between Americans and the people of the 139 countries in which they have served. Applications to serve in the Peace Corps have increased 16 percent this past year, the largest boost in the last five years. Currently, 7,876 Peace Corps Volunteers are serving in 76 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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