Peace Corps Volunteers Swearing-In Ceremony

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The Honorable Minister Dr. Kalumbi Shangula, US Embassy Chargé d’Affaires Jessica Long and Peace Corps National Director Elizabeth Anderson join the newly sworn in Group 51 Namibia Peace Corps Volunteers.

Okahandja – The swearing-in ceremony for 14 Peace Corps volunteers took place on Thursday, November 17, 2022 at the Andreas Kukuri Conference Center in Okahandja. The Minister of Health and Social Services, Hon. Dr. Kalumbi Shangula gave the keynote address to welcome the Peace Corps Volunteers to Namibia. The US Chargé d’Affaires, Ms. Jessica Long, the Executive Director of the Ministry of Urban and Rural Development, Mr. Daniel Nghidinua, and representatives of Peace Corps partner organizations were also present.

The 14 Peace Corps volunteers arrived in Namibia on August 31, 2022 and underwent rigorous twelve-week pre-training in Okahandja before being sworn in. They will soon be leading economic development and community health projects in communities across Namibia.

The eight Peace Corps Economic Empowerment Volunteers will work alongside their Namibian counterparts to support the government’s sustainable economic development agenda. With the help of these Volunteers, aspiring Namibian entrepreneurs, especially young people and women, will increase their capacity to contribute to building a strong economy. Volunteers will also work with their partner organizations to promote income generating activities and small business development in their communities.

Six community health and HIV/AIDS volunteers will contribute to national HIV mitigation through the United States President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR), the largest effort in history by a nation to fight disease. In partnership with the Department of Health and Human Services, the Department of Education, Arts and Culture and other implementing agencies, volunteering activities will promote behavior change and build the skills of life to overcome barriers to HIV prevention and treatment.

“The partnership between the United States and Namibia is strong and diverse, grounded in meaningful people-to-people relationships and forged on shared values ​​such as democracy, the rule of law, and human rights. Peace Corps is a special and unique part of this relationship, a relationship in which Americans volunteer to work alongside Namibian communities to contribute to the development of this incredible country,” said Jessica Long, Chargé d’Affaires, ai , from the United States Embassy. States to Namibia.

At the start of the global COVID-19 pandemic, 127 volunteers were serving in all parts of Namibia. When the country entered lockdown, all Volunteers were evacuated. Although groups of reintegrated Peace Corps Volunteers and one-year Peace Corps Intervention Volunteers arrived in May, July and August 2022, this fifty-first class of Namibian Peace Corps Volunteers is the first group of two-year-old volunteers to return to Namibia since the global crisis. evacuation of Peace Corps Volunteers in March 2020.

Volunteers complete two-year assignments, during which they live and work in Namibian communities, learning local languages ​​and integrating into the culture while working to advance the communities’ priority development goals. Peace Corps Volunteers began serving in Namibia in 1990. Since then, more than 1,900 American volunteers have worked in a variety of sectors, including education, health, and economic development.

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