Break out the old copy books. Peace Corps teachers are returning to Ethiopian schools
In the coming year, Peace Corps will tinker with the assignments new PCVs in Ethiopia will undertake. Projects in agriculture, the environment, and education are in the works
by Barry Hillenbrand (Debre Markos 63–65)
When Peace Corps returned to Ethiopia in 2007 the new PCVs were assigned to work with PEPFAR, the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief. Part of the funding for the grand return of Peace Corps to Ethiopia came out of PEPFAR’s budget, and that helped speed Peace Corps back to Ethiopia in the days when funding was a particular problem. The new groups of Volunteers have all worked fighting Ethiopia’s pressing AIDS crisis.
But many RPCVs had hoped that Peace Corps/Ethiopia would return to education, a program that made a lasting impression all over the country. Indeed, the new PCVs, hard at work with AIDS programs, were constantly running into people who would ask if they knew “Mr. Bob from Ohio who taught maths” or some other long-remembered teacher they had in secondary school thirty or forty years ago. Peace Corps — and America — still has a good reputation across the country because of Peace Corps teachers.
It now seems that Peace Corps will be returning to teaching. This year Peace Corp will expand assignments for new PCVs to include projects in agriculture and the environment, as well as continuing work in health. In the summer of 2011, PCVs will be sent to Ethiopia to work not only in health and agriculture, but also in teaching. The summer 2011 group may number as many as 70 PCVs. It will probably include English teachers, as well as primary school teachers and English teacher trainers. But details of the new programs, including the size and specialities of the new contingent, are still being worked out by Peace Corps and the Ministry of Education.
Keep clicking into the HERALD. More details are on the way.