United States Ambassador to Ethiopia, Patricia M. Haslach administered the oath of service to 57 new Peace Corps Volunteers at the U.S. Embassy in Addis Ababa today.
Thirty three of these Volunteers will be working within Peace Corps Ethiopia’s Community Health and HIV Project while the remaining 24 will be working within the its Environment Project. With this new group there are now 223 Peace Corps Volunteers in Ethiopia.
Peace Corps Ethiopia began working with public health in 2007 with direct support from the U.S. President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR). Since then the program has evolved to include activities such as water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH), maternal and newborn health, and malaria prevention, in addition to HIV prevention, care and support. Volunteers are additionally involved in a variety of projects including leadership camps for youth, public health awareness campaigns, income generating activities, Grassroot Soccer HIV awareness interventions, organizational capacity building, and youth clubs.
Peace Corps Ethiopia’s Environment program began in 2010. The Resilient Environment, Agriculture, and Livelihoods (REAL) project is a partnership with USAID and the Feed the Future initiative. Volunteers, in collaboration with agriculture offices, farmer training centers, and local development agents, work to strengthen individual and organizational technical capacities and to improve food security and natural resource management. Volunteers work with leaders in agriculture, health, nutrition, education, and business to mobilize their communities and help them develop a local response to global food insecurity
While first established in 1962, Peace Corps returned to Ethiopia in 2007, and today 223 volunteers working in the three sectors of Health, Environment and Education. The 57 volunteers accepting the oath of service today will represent their fellow Americans in rural kebeles across the four administrative regions of Tigray, Oromiya, Amhara and SNNP.
As the preeminent international service organization of the United States, the Peace Corps sends Americans abroad to tackle the most pressing needs of people around the world. Peace Corps volunteers work at the grassroots level with local governments, schools, communities, small businesses and entrepreneurs to develop sustainable solutions that address challenges in education, health, economic development, agriculture, environment and youth development.