Two Texans Return to Africa to Serve as Crisis Corps Volunteers

WASHINGTON, D.C., May 25, 2004 – Two former Peace Corps volunteers from Texas have headed back to Africa to support and provide HIV/AIDS education and services for the Peace Corps’ Crisis Corps program.

Laura Moch, of Tyler, Texas, will provide crucial assistance in the fight against HIV/AIDS, as she works with organizations that perform voluntary counseling and testing. Moch will serve in Malawi, which has one of the highest HIV prevalence rates in the world; an estimated 30 percent of urban adults between the ages of 14 and 45 are HIV positive. Overall, there are more than one million Malawians infected with HIV/AIDS, according to the Malawi National AIDS Commission. Previously, Moch served as a science teacher in Sunyani, Ghana with the Peace Corps from 1995-97.

San Antonio resident Elizabeth Foy will spend the next six months working with educators to better incorporate HIV/AIDS prevention training into their curriculum. Foy has been assigned to Namibia to work with the project Basic Education Support, sponsored by the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID). Namibia currently has an HIV prevalence rate of approximately 20 percent. The projects Foy will be working on involve strengthening curriculum and increasing parent and community involvement in school activities, specifically for students in primary levels. As part of her assignment, she will be training community leaders in improving HIV/AIDS services. Previously, Foy served as a health extension worker in Kasungu, Malawi, with the Peace Corps from 2001-2003.

Since Crisis Corps’ inception in 1996, nearly 550 returned Peace Corps volunteers have taken the opportunity to use their invaluable skills and experience to address ongoing community needs in over 30 different countries. Crisis Corps volunteers work on short term projects, utilizing the skills they learned as Peace Corps volunteers and in post service careers. To find out more about the Peace Corps’ Crisis Corps program, click here.

Since 1961, more than 171,000 volunteers have served in the Peace Corps, working in such diverse fields as education, health, HIV/AIDS education and prevention, information technology, business development, the environment, and agriculture. Peace Corps volunteers must be U.S. citizens and at least 18 years of age. Peace Corps service is a two-year commitment.

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