Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Accessibility

The Peace Corps seeks to reflect the rich diversity of the United States and to bring diverse perspectives to our global work in order to make hands-on, lasting impact alongside local counterparts and communities.

For the Peace Corps, intercultural competence, diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility (ICDEIA) are core principles that help the agency achieve its mission.

Peace Corps' approach to ICDEIA efforts encourages deep humility and helps build transferrable skills as our staff and Volunteers partner at the grassroots level with people from over 60 different countries. We seek to foster an inclusive, equitable, and accessible organizational culture—one that ensures diversity of thought, experience, and personal background as we partner with and serve host country communities around the world.

To support this vision, the Peace Corps trains both staff and Volunteers to prioritize and advance ICDEIA through our work, service, and various learning opportunities.

ICDEIA training and expectations

Intercultural Competence (IC), and Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Accessibility (DEIA) are interrelated and inseparable elements vital to the successful work and service done by Peace Corps staff, Trainees, and Volunteers. Navigating each element requires humility and the willingness to pay critical attention to one’s own perspectives, identities, and spheres of influence—particularly when working within a community or cultural context that is not one’s own.

Peace Corps’ ICDEIA training invites Trainees and Volunteers to reflect on aspects of their own social identities, values, and intercultural competence, and to reflect on those of their host country. Being able to reflect in these ways enables Trainees and Volunteers to develop a greater understanding of how these factors may impact and influence their training, Volunteer experience, and interactions with staff, fellow Volunteers, and host country partners.

Throughout training and service:

  • Trainees and Volunteers are asked to intentionally develop ICDEIA related skills via experiential learning opportunities.
  • Trainees and Volunteers are called to demonstrate their ability to engage with both identity and intercultural differences and similarities across complex environments in ways that effectively and appropriately contribute to a culture of inclusion, equity, and belonging.
  • Trainees and Volunteers are given opportunities to practice critical skills like perspective taking, humility, empathy, suspending judgement, and intercultural code-shifting.

Trainees and Volunteers will be supported on this journey by Peace Corps staff and currently serving Volunteers, who will provide training and strategies for navigating ICDEIA challenges.

Prioritizing ICDEIA in organizational culture

As an agency, we seek to create holistic systems of support for Trainees and Volunteers. To that end, we aim to ensure that ICDEIA is integrated into training and operations at every post. ICDEIA work is a collective effort that involves everyone in the Peace Corps network.

Peace Corps remains committed to prioritizing ICDEIA throughout its systems and support structures and continually strives to foster more equitable, inclusive, and accessible organizational cultures where Volunteers, staff, and host country partners can contribute to their full potential.

If you have any questions regarding ICDEIA efforts at the Peace Corps or during training or service, please look over the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) page. More information can also be found in the Preparing to Volunteer section of country-specific pages.