FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
Saturday, January 5, 2008
Peace Corps Volunteers in Kenya Remain Safe
Volunteers in Three Western Provinces Relocated
WASHINGTON, D.C., January 5, 2008 - Peace Corps Director Ron Tschetter announced that all Volunteers serving in Kenya are all accounted for and safe.
Peace Corps/Kenya Volunteers are consolidated in a variety of locations in response to the ongoing unrest associated with the recent presidential and parliamentary elections. There are 144 Volunteers serving in Kenya, 122 are currently in the country, 22 are out of the country on vacation.
Volunteers in the three western provinces of Kenya, which are most affected by the unrest, have been temporarily relocated to a Tanzania where they will be under the care of Peace Corps staff. All other Volunteers in Kenya are in safe locations where they will remain until the situation improves.
Peace Corps/Washington is in constant communication with staff in Kenya and the U.S. Embassy in Nairobi. The Peace Corps will continue to evaluate and monitor the situation and take any action necessary to ensure the safety of the Volunteers.
Since 1965, more than 5,000 Peace Corps Volunteers have served in Kenya. Currently, 144 Volunteers are working in the areas of education, small business development, and health and HIV/AIDS prevention. Volunteers in Kenya are also serving in a unique deaf education program which began in 1992 as a way to train educators on better teaching methods, and to broaden the production of learning materials and facilities for deaf and hard of hearing students. The program now includes computer training and health and HIV/AIDS education programs, as part of the President\'s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief.
Each Peace Corps program has an Emergency Action Plan (EAP) specific to that country and developed in cooperation with the U.S. Embassy and Peace Corps/ Washington. The plans are tested frequently and information is updated constantly. Volunteers are thoroughly trained in their role and responsibilities in the EAP. Posts are prepared for all emergencies.
The Peace Corps is celebrating a 46-year legacy of service at home and abroad, and a 37-year high for Volunteers in the field. Since 1961, more than 190,000 Volunteers have helped promote a better understanding between Americans and the people of the 139 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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