U.S. Peace Corps volunteers arrive to aid Philippine communities

U.S. Peace Corps Philippines Country Director Marguerite Roy welcomes the 281st batch of Peace Corps Volunteers in Manila on July 8.

On July 8, 48 new U.S. Peace Corps Volunteers arrived in Manila to embark on a two-year mission supporting local initiatives in education, youth development, and environmental protection across the Philippines.

Starting in September, these volunteers will be deployed to various host communities in Aklan, Antique, Batangas, Benguet, Bohol, Capiz, Cebu, Iloilo, La Union, Nueva Ecija, Oriental Mindoro, Pampanga, Pangasinan, and Tarlac.

Their roles will include co-teaching English in public schools, facilitating youth development programs in Department of Welfare and Social Development-accredited organizations, and aiding local governments in creating marine protected areas and managing coastal resources.

“U.S. Peace Corps Volunteers come from all over the United States and represent the diversity of the American people. They bring a variety of skills and experience to their service in the Philippines,” said U.S. Ambassador MaryKay Carlson. “The Peace Corps’ goal is to promote world peace and friendship, and what better way to do this than to serve with cultural humility and mutual respect to our Filipino friends and partners.”

This latest group represents the 281st batch of U.S. Peace Corps Volunteers to the Philippines, bringing the total number of American volunteers currently serving in the country to 126, surpassing pre-pandemic levels.

Donald James Gawe, Executive Director of the Philippine National Volunteer Service Coordinating Agency (PNVSCA), expressed optimism about the volunteers’ impact. “We warmly welcome this 281st batch of U.S. Peace Corps Volunteers,” Gawe said.

“We hope they will continue to serve as builders of hope and catalysts of change. Together, let us sustain the spirit of cooperation and mutual understanding and create a sustainable future for the generations to come.”

The new volunteers, aged 22 to 67, will undergo an 11-week pre-service training program covering technical, language, and cultural studies to prepare for their assignments. They bring diverse skills and a keen enthusiasm to collaborate with Filipino community members on projects that foster knowledge exchange and produce lasting benefits.

Since 1961, the U.S. Peace Corps program in the Philippines has been one of the longest-running, with more than 9,400 Americans having served alongside local communities to support development priorities.

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