Director's Welcome

I appreciate your interest in the Peace Corps program in Paraguay and welcome the opportunity to introduce you to this exceptional country with its many unique cultural traditions and remarkably hospitable people. Your experience here will shape your personal and professional lives for years to come.  Those of you willing to work with dedication and mutual respect will find acceptance, an outstanding experience, and lasting friendship. As a Peace Corps Volunteer in Paraguay you are a development professional working at the invitation of a Paraguayan government ministry or community organization to work on a specific project addressing a development need of the Paraguayan people. Your project has specific goals and objectives to provide technical assistance in the sector to which you are assigned. You work with Paraguayan counterparts, community members, families, and youth, all striving to achieve the project’s goals for sustainable development.

You will be offered an invitation to serve based on the education and experience you already possess.  Your knowledge will be enhanced by an intense pre-service training program designed to prepare you for Volunteer service.  You are provided training in practical Spanish and Guaraní, technical orientation for your project assignment, and cross-cultural orientation to assist you in the process of adapting your personal work and life styles to ensure your safety and effectiveness in Paraguay.  During the 11 weeks of training, you are required to demonstrate your commitment and competence in language, technical, cross-cultural, and core skill areas in order to qualify for Peace Corps service and take the oath as a Peace Corps Volunteer. 

Throughout your years here, you are supported by the dedicated staff of Peace Corps/Paraguay who mentor, support, and challenge you to maximize your service and provide meaningful contributions to the Paraguayan people and their communities.  The challenges are many throughout your service, such as integrating into your host family and community, communicating meaningfully in both Spanish and Guaraní, and finding local friends and a support system.  You are expected to become part of your community, spending most of your time, including your weekends, integrated into daily life and customs while living on a modest stipend.  Upon completing service here most Volunteers feel mostly strongly about the personal relationships and connections they have made, ones they will most likely remember and keep throughout the rest of their lives and careers.

If you are interested in becoming a Peace Corps Volunteer, I ask you to seriously consider an opportunity and commitment to join us in the construction of a productive and healthy world for Paraguayan families and communities.  If invited to serve as a Volunteer here, please carefully review our Welcome Book, your Volunteer Assignment Description (VAD), and the Peace Corps Volunteer Handbook to learn more about Paraguay, your assignment, and Peace Corps policies. I encourage you to reflect honestly on your willingness to commit to the highest standard of Peace Corps service.

All of the Peace Corps/Paraguay staff and I would look forward to welcoming and working with you.  I have served as Country Director for several Peace Corps programs over the decades and I feel fortunate to have returned to this part of the world to help guide our efforts and shared purpose to better the lives of the Paraguayans who have invited us so warmly into their homes and communities.

Howard Lyon

Country Director,  Peace Corps Paraguay