Panama

Director's Welcome

Diane Carazas, Country Director for Peace Corps Panama
Diane Carazas, Country Director for Peace Corps Panama

Welcome to Peace Corps Panama! There are approximately 220 Volunteers working throughout the country to promote sustainable agriculture, environmental conservation, environmental health, and teaching English. 

Panama is a stunningly beautiful country with a fascinating history and diverse culture. Volunteers quickly fall in love with the people and natural beauty, but also come to realize that there is much work to be done throughout the country, as more than 65 percent of Panama’s rural population and 95 percent of the indigenous population live in poverty. Peace Corps Panama works closely with government agencies, nongovernmental organizations (NGOs), and community partners to improve the lives of Panamanians—especially those living in rural and indigenous areas. At least 30 percent of Volunteers are placed with traditionally underserved indigenous groups, including the Ngäbe, Buglé, Emberá, and Wounaan. These Volunteers learn the language of the indigenous group in addition to Spanish. Others work with traditional Latino communities throughout the country. 

If you become a Peace Corps Volunteer in Panama you will spend your first 10 weeks in training—a fun, intense, challenging, and rewarding experience. You will have innumerable opportunities to learn about yourself, Panama, and its people. I ask you to come with an open mind and a sense of humor and adventure. Be prepared to work hard. I know from my own experience as a Volunteer in Paraguay that you will be enlightened and humbled by your Volunteer experience. The enormous challenge will help you to experience exponential personal growth. This kind of growth can be both painful and rewarding. We expect you to arrive with a commitment to work professionally with your community partners and to be a role model and positive influence, earning the respect of both community members and Volunteer peers. 

Check out the website of returned Panama Volunteers at panamapcv.net; you may want to contact some returned Volunteers to learn more about service in Panama. I look forward to your arrival and working with you in Panama. 

¡Saludos y nos vemos pronto!

Diane Carazas
Country Director