The Namibian (Windhoek)

Namibia: US Peace Corps Marks 15 Years of Service in Namibia

Windhoek — TODAY'S swearing-in ceremony of 58 United States Peace Corps volunteers marks the 15th anniversary of the Peace Corps programme in Namibia.

The 58 volunteers are the 25th group of Americans sent to Namibia.

They come from all parts of the United States and reflect the rich American ethnic diversity, Stan Harsha from the US embassy said yesterday.

About two thirds of these volunteers will be assigned to the Ministry of Education, where they will teach English, Mathematics, Science or Information Technology at local schools or work at the regional Teacher Resource Centres.

"The rest will be working in health-related positions where they will be involved in various aspects of the Government-led fight against HIV-AIDS.

"Individual volunteers will support the outreach programmes of the Ministry of Youth, National Service, Sports and Culture, the Ministry of Education's RACE Committees and faith-based and community-based organisations such as Catholic AIDS Action and the Church Alliance for Orphans (CAFO)," Harsha said.

One of the first international organisations to work in Namibia after Independence, Peace Corps volunteers first arrived in the country in September 1990.

The initial focus of these volunteers was educational reform and the Peace Corps worked closely with the Government to develop a national and inclusive educational programme open to all Namibians.

The 58 volunteers to be sworn in today were selected through a rigorous nationwide selection process that lasted over a year.

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