Volunteers Launch Crisis Corps First HIV/AIDS Education Initiative in Ghana

WASHINGTON, D.C., March 9, 2004 – For the first time, the West African nation of Ghana is partnering with the Peace Corps’ Crisis Corps volunteers to tackle the critical issue of HIV/AIDS.

Six Crisis Corps volunteers, who recently arrived in Ghana, will work as HIV/AIDS education trainers for the next six months. Since the criteria for becoming a Crisis Corps volunteer includes prior service as a Peace Corps volunteer, the volunteers will bring to Ghana a wealth of skills and experiences obtained in countries such as Malawi, Madagascar, and Kenya. As Peace Corps volunteers, their work included teaching health education to students, providing nutrition education, and promoting HIV/AIDS prevention.

In their capacity as education trainers with the Crisis Corps, two volunteers will be working with teacher training colleges across Ghana to implement HIV/AIDS curriculums. Volunteers will provide feedback on the curriculum and will supervise students training to be teachers. Another volunteer will provide monitoring and training support for the HIV/AIDS curriculum being used at these training colleges.

All six volunteers will be building upon Peace Corps’ long-term relationship with Ghana, the first country ever to welcome Peace Corps volunteers. Since the establishment of the program in 1961, over 3,500 volunteers have served in Ghana. Currently, 196 Peace Corps volunteers are completing their two years of service there, as they work in the areas of business development, health, education, and environmental preservation. Although their primary projects vary, all volunteers in Ghana are trained in and work to promote awareness of HIV/AIDS.

Crisis Corps volunteers in Ghana will be partnering with World Education. Founded in 1951 to meet the needs of the educationally disadvantaged, World Education is a non-profit organization providing training and technical assistance in non-formal education to governments, civil society organizations, and community groups. World Education currently has programs in more than 15 African countries.

Since Crisis Corps’ inception in 1996, more than 540 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. To find out more about the Peace Corps’ Crisis Corps program, check out this link.

Since 1961, more than 170,000 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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