Seventy-two United States Peace Corps trainees will be sworn in by the United States Ambassador to Botswana, Craig Cloud for their two-year service to Botswana after completing 11 weeks of training on October 9 and 10.
The ceremonies will take place today in Ramotswa at the Kelemogile Community Junior Secondary School (23 Volunteers to be placed in schools) and tomorrow in Kanye at the Kanye Education Center (49 Volunteers to be placed in health facilities, government offices and civil society organizations).
Invited guests and speakers include the First Lady, Neo Masisi, the Ministers of Basic Education and Health and Wellness, Bangwaketse Kgosikgolo Malope II, Balete Kgosikgolo Mosadi Seboko, the National AIDS and Health Promotion Agency (NAHPA) National Coordinator and ministerial partners from the Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development, as well as civil society. Members of the press are invited to cover the event.
“This will be the 20th group of Volunteers to serve in Botswana since Peace Corps returned to assist in the HIV response in 2003. These trainees represent the diversity of America in terms of age, ethnicity, and professional background. Represented in the group are African Americans, Asian Americans, Hispanic Americans, young professionals and a retiree,” reads the press release from the US Embassy.
These include schools (where they teach life skills with Guidance and Counselling teachers), clinics, health posts, District Health Management Teams, District AIDS Coordinators’ offices, Social and Community Development Offices, and civil society organizations.
“After a long partnership between Peace Corps and the Government of Botswana, the country graduated from Peace Corps’ support in 1997 due to the significant development gains Botswana achieved since independence. However, former President Festus Mogae invited Peace Corps to return in 2003 to support the government’s response to the raging HIV/AIDS crisis.
Since this time, Peace Corps has continued to support local, district, and national HIV/AIDS interventions in close collaboration with Government partners such as the NAHPA and the Ministries of Health & Wellness, Basic Education and Local Government and Rural Development.”