Peace Corps Jamaica welcomed back six Volunteers on Thursday, September 29. Volunteers have not served in Jamaica since they were evacuated in March 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The event marked the first time in the agency’s 60-year history that volunteers were evacuated from all global posts. Since that time, Peace Corps/Jamaica staff have continued to engage in the community through virtual service and partnering with host country nationals and partners to host agriculture, education and COVID-19 education and vaccination projects.
“We are so excited for the historic reentry of Peace Corps Volunteers to Jamaica,” said Peace Corps Jamaica Country Director, Glenda N. Green. She further stated that, “Since March 2020, Peace Corps staff around the world have worked to strengthen the foundation of the agency. We are now ready to relaunch volunteer service and meet this historic moment with our community partners. Peace Corps Volunteers are coming back, and we are coming back better!”
As countries around the world begin to reopen their borders and COVID-19 numbers continue to decrease, Peace Corps global remains cautious in its approach to return Volunteers to service safely. While six Volunteers have arrived in Jamaica for now, Peace Corps Jamaica anticipates the usual cohort of approximately 40 Volunteers to arrive in March 2023.
At the request of the government of Jamaica, Peace Corps Volunteers will engage in agricultural and educational projects. From 1962 to March 2020, over 4,025 Peace Corps Volunteers have served in Jamaica, in the areas of agriculture, community economic development, education, environment, health, and youth development.
The Peace Corps is an international service network of volunteers, community members, host country partners and staff who are driven by the agency’s mission of world peace and friendship. At the invitation of governments around the world, Peace Corps volunteers work alongside community members on locally-prioritized projects. Through service, members of the Peace Corps network develop transferable skills and hone intercultural competencies that position them to be the next generation of global leaders. Since President John F. Kennedy established the Peace Corps in 1961, more than 240,000 Americans have served in 142 countries worldwide.