U.S. Peace Corps Swears in 57 New Volunteers

Ambassador Harrington (right) poses for a picture with Peace Corps Lesotho's Country Director Wendy Van Damme (left) and one of the new volunteers Hindrik Prenger (center) following the swearing-in ceremony at Peace Corps' head office in Maseru, Wednesday, December 14, 2016.

Today United States Ambassador Matthew Harrington swore in Lesotho’s new group of Peace Corps Volunteers.  The Peace Corps is the United States government agency that sends Americans to developing countries to help build their skills capacity and form lasting cross-cultural relationships.  The United States Peace Corps was established in 1961 by President John F. Kennedy and has been in Lesotho continuously since 1967. Today the Peace Corps serves 65 countries with more than 7,000 volunteers and trainees around the world.

Peace Corps Volunteers in Lesotho serve in two different programs:  Education and Healthy Youth. Volunteers in the Education program serve as primary school teachers of English and secondary school teachers of mathematics. Volunteers in the Healthy Youth program work with community-based organizations to contribute to the prevention of HIV/AIDS among youth, assist in care and treatment of HIV positive youth, and help prepare youth for the worlds of work.

There are currently 61 Volunteers serving the rural and remote areas of Lesotho. The 57 newly sworn-in Peace Corps Volunteers just completed their intensive eleven-week training program in Sesotho language and culture and technical skills in education, health, and youth development.  The training was conducted in villages in the Berea district, where the Volunteers stay with local families.

More than 2,300 volunteers have served in Lesotho since 1967. The Peace Corps is part of the U.S. President’s Emergency Plan for HIV/AIDS Relief (PEPFAR), and all Volunteers use their community organization skills to extend the reach of national and international efforts to respond to the epidemic in Lesotho.

For further information please contact InfoMaseru@state.gov or call +266-2231-2666 ext. 4317.