Peace Corps volunteers reaching thousands of young people with life skills training

July 26, 2019

WASHINGTON–With over 200 million youth around the world living on less than $1 a day, Peace Corps is working to strengthen long-term health, education and economic outcomes for young people. Since its inception in 2010, youth in development has become the Peace Corps’ third-largest sector comprising 13 percent of volunteer positions in 12 countries.

In 2019, approximately 2,400 volunteers in the agency's youth in development sector will reach over 171,000 young people with training and activities focused on life skills, gender equity, healthy living, financial literacy and more. Working at the community level in small towns and rural areas, volunteers coordinate with schools, community-based organizations, non-governmental organizations and governments to support youth with the necessary knowledge, skills and experiences to become healthy and engaged citizens.

“Volunteers serving in the youth in development sector support young people on a one-to-one basis,” said Peace Corps Director Jody Olsen. “They transform lives through leadership, working to ensure young people have the chance to succeed in every field, from education to business to public health. One of the many exciting elements of the Peace Corps service is that every volunteer, regardless of sector, can make these crucial connections with youth in their communities.”

In 2018, youth in development volunteers reached over 54,000 girls from Armenia to Guatemala through leadership and entrepreneurship trainings. “I really feel like I can be a leader in my community and make a change,” said Ayesha, a youth club member in Botswana who works with her local Peace Corps volunteer. “Now I know I can go out and try a lot of different things and I will be successful.”

Around the world, Peace Corps volunteers build a foundation of success for the next generation. Ashley Pinamonti of Spring Mills, Pennsylvania, is currently serving as a youth in development volunteer in the Dominican Republic. “My favorite part about the youth in development sector is its flexibility. It has allowed me to adapt my work to suit the community’s needs and has given me the opportunity to work with so many inspiring people,” Pinamonti said. “I am looking forward to coming back a few years from now to see how much the community has progressed and to share some cafecitos (coffee) with all of the people who have touched my life in these two short years.”

View open positions in the Youth in Development sector here.

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, the 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, Instagram and Twitter.

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